Astroparticle physics

Astroparticle physics combines physics and astronomy. In the cosmos, very strong magnetic fields create what can be considered a ‘natural’ particle accelerator. To perform astrophysics research, scientists ‘just’ need to build the right detectors. Nikhef is active in KM3NeT, Auger, XENON1T/nT and Virgo.

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Physics Data Processing

Advanced computing for physics and other sciences. Nikhef researchers are mainly developing increasingly better grid software, and transferring their grid knowledge, so that  scientists who are struggling with an ‘impossible’ data problem can profit from the grid.

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Nikhef’s Theoretical Physics group performs theoretical research on a wide range of fundamental topics in high-energy physics, ranging from particle and astroparticle physics to cosmology, gravitational waves and string theory.

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Detector R&D

Answering big elementary particle physics questions requires pioneering experiments. The Detector R&D program at Nikhef is aimed at conceptualizing and testing of instrumentation concepts before they are implemented in scientific programs at Nikhef.

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Particle Physics

In particle physics, very large detectors are used to study elementary particles. Particles such as protons are accelerated in a particle accelerator, and made to collide with each other. The detectors record these collisions, which release a lot of energy to create new particles. Nikhef is active in ALICE, ATLAS and LHCb at CERN and eEDM in Groningen.

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Technische afdelingen Nikhef

Mechanical technology

The Mechanical Technology (MT) department is made up of approximately 30 MBO-, HBO- and University schooled technical engineers. The main task of the department is to develop, design and realise mechanical solutions for the mostly international projects that Nikhef participates in.

Programme spotlight

XENONnT: Dark matter

Of all matter in our Universe, only about 5% consists of ‘ordinary matter’ as we commonly know it, built up from atoms. This is what all stars, planets and other visible materials are made up from. However, no less than 95% consists of dark energy (68%) and dark matter (27%).

National Institute for Subatomic Physics

Welcome to Nikhef. We are the Dutch National Institute for Subatomic Physics. Our institute performs research into the elementary building blocks of our Universe, their mutual forces and the structure of space and time.
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Please note that some of the content on our homepage and further pages has not been translated into English yet.

Recent news

28 September 2021

NWO-grant SRON and Nikhef for space-ready sensors in LISA gravitational wave detector

SRON and Nikhef receive an ENW-M grant from NWO for the development of detectors for the gravitational wave telescope LISA. The grant will enable them to further develop…

21 September 2021

Extended neutrino telescope KM3NeT back in action again

The KM3NeT neutrino detector in the Mediterranean deep sea is back on after new detector lines were added last week in the Italian ARCA section. In total, eight…

16 September 2021

The “simple” proton proves more than ever to be a world unto itself

Forget the pictures in textbooks of the proton consisting of three quarks, two up and one down, plus some gluons. A new study by Nikhef theorist Juan Rojo…

Future events

29 September 2021

PhD defense Pedro Rocio Rodrigues Cal @ UvA

Pedro Rocio Rodrigues Cal, PhD at Nikhef, will defend his thesis Wednesday 29 september 2021 at 14.00 at the University of Amsterdam. “Jet substructure at the LHC with…
1 October 2021

HYBRID COLLOQUIUM: “Towards picosecond timing with ultrathin silicon pixel detectors” by Jory Sonneveld (Nikhef)

Speaker: Jory Sonneveld (Nikhef) Title: “Towards picosecond timing with ultrathin silicon pixel detectors” Room: Z011 Abstract: “How can an image sensor similar to the one in your phone…
1 October 2021

PhD defense Kasper van Dam @ UT

Kasper van Dam, PhD at Nikhef, will defend his thesis Friday 1 October 2021 at 14.45 at Twente University. “HiSPARC: A Scintillating Experiment” The High School Project on…