by Panos Charitos. Published: 06 August 2012


Gian Michelle Innocenti - ALICE new INFN fellow at CERN

A.M. First of all I would like to ask you about your current research activities and how they are related to your INFN fellowship.

G. M. I am a 2nd year PhD student in the University of Torino and will spend one year at CERN as part of an INFN fellowship. During my stay I will continue my work in the D meson analysis as a member of the heavy-flavour working group. The main goal of this study is to investigate the properties of the high-density QCD medium which is created in heavy-ion collisions through the study of charmed meson production. My work is focused in particular on the study of D+s meson production in proton-proton and lead-lead collisions which is also the main topic of my PhD thesis. At the same time I am involved in the maintenance of the Silicon Drift Detector of ALICE. With my colleagues I will be in charge of the on call service: the role of the on-call expert implies the prompt solution of problems which can occur to the detector in order to guarantee high performance in the data acquisition.

A.M. Gian Michele, how did you decide to get involved with the ALICE experiment?

G.I.M. I started working on ALICE in the Turin group as master student: the topic of my thesis was related to the identification of the so called “pile up” events which are characterized by the superposition of independent proton-proton collisions. The identification of these events was performed using the information coming from the Silicon Pixel Detector.

A.M. Why charm analysis in ALICE?

G.I.M. Due to the excellent capabilities of the ALICE detector in tracking and particle identification, ALICE is really a great experiment to study the D meson production in heavy-ion collisions. In particular, it allows the study of D mesons at very low pt, down to 0 GeV/c: this region is extremely interesting for the study of charm suppression. In addition, in particular for what concerns the D+s analysis, the possibility to reach the low momentum region is fundamental in order to study the charm recombination of the quark in the medium: this effect is expected to play a relevant role in the low-intermediate transverse momentum region. We also measured the D meson production in proton-proton collisions: these analyses are also particularly interesting since they allow to test the pQCD calculations in the new energy regime of the LHC. At the same time they provide a fundamental reference for the Pb-Pb analysis.


"ALICE is really a great experiment to study the D meson production in heavy-ion collisions. In particular, it allows the study of D mesons at very low pt, down to 0 GeV/c: this region is extremely interesting for the study of charm suppression"

A.M. Will you be creating your research results in the forthcoming Quark matter 2012 conference?

The D meson group will present the latest results of the analysis in Pb-Pb collisions using the 2011 data sample, in particular related to D meson RAA and flow. The first measurement of the D+s production in Pb-Pb collisions will also be presented.