Contact Information

Prof. Peter Simpson
Physics & Astronomy 210
(519) 661-3390
psimpson [at] uwo [dot]ca
FAX: (519) 661-2033


Welcome to my web pages.

The Positron Beam Laboratory at Western uses beams of positrons (the anti-particle of the electron) as a probe to study the structure of solids, especially electronic materials.

Point defects (vacancies, i.e. atoms missing from the crystal structure, and impurities) play a key role in determining the electronic properties of materials used for integrated circuits. To develop new materials and processes, an understanding of defect structures and behaviour is vital, and will become more so in the future as devices are made smaller and faster.

Positron annihilation is a technique that can provide unique information on the microstructure of materials. The UWO Positron Beam Laboratory is engaged in the state-of-the-art development of positron techniques, and their application to the materials of high technology.

Most of our research involves collaborations with industry and with other universities, to investigate novel materials and processing techniques.

Recently we have been developing innovative experimental techniques to extract chemical information from positron annihilation.

We are also working to develop positron methods as a probe of polymer materials. In these materials, the positron can form a bound with an electron, yielding the atom-like neutral structure called positronium (Ps). Experiments which measure positronium formation and decay can provide information about the structure of polymer materials.

Students typically learn a variety of experimental methods, and become familiar with the materials and methods of high technology, including the array of particle beam methods available through Interface Science Western.

If you're interested in doing a Master's or PhD project in one of these
fields, please contact me at "psimpson [at] uwo [dot] ca".