Nuclear & particle physics

Seminar on the theory of particles and fields

Winter semester 2020/2021


Beginning of lecture period: 2 November 2020
End of lecture period: 12 February 2021

Course number in the course overview: 112301

  • Organizers, organization & dates


    Dates & locations

    SEMINAR Wednesday, 10:00-12:00 KP/TP, seminar room 304                        
    Registration and preparatory meeting (via "zoom", see below): Wednesday, 04.11.2020, 10:15

    IMPORTANT notice

    Due to the coronavirus pandemic and the associated regulations by the WWU, the seminar will (at least initially) be held as a "webinar" using the video conferencing tool "Zoom". The preparatory meeting on 04.11. at 10:15 a.m. will also already take place as a zoom meeting. To register for the seminar and/or participate in the preliminary meeting (with meeting URL/ID) first, please send an e-mail to: heitger(at)

    The literature as well as further advice concerning the preparation of the talks are made available via the LearnWeb.

    Registration and guidance

    Prof. Dr. J. Heitger

    ITP, Wilhelm-Klemm-Straße 9, 48149 Münster, room 318
    Tel.: +49 251 83-34948, e-mail: heitger(at)

    Certificate of performance

    Presentation and regular participation.


    Quantum Theory.

  • Contents & literature

    Symmetries and conservation laws

    Topic for winter semester 2020/2021
    Image of a snowflake
    © WWU/ITP
    Illustration of the “eightfold way” (flavor symmetry in QCD)
    © WWU/ITP

    Symmetries and the conservation laws connected to them play an important role in nearly all areas of physics. In the first talks, the concept of symmetry will first be examined conceptually and in terms of philosophy of science, also using some prominent examples. Later on, the description of symmetries through group theory, symmetries in quantum mechanics and elementary particle physics (e. g. the flavor symmetry SU(3) and gauge symmetries), symmetry breaking as well as scale symmetry will be among the topics.

    Topics are primarily given out to master’s students. A limited number of topics can possibly also be worked on by bachelor’s students. Thus, we refer to the seminar on the theory of atoms, nuclei and condensed matter at this point, which is targeted exclusively towards bachelor’s students.


    • I.J.R. Aitchison: An informal introduction to gauge field theories, Cambridge, Cambridge, 1982
    • A. Das, T. Ferbel: Kern- und Teilchenphysik, Spektrum, Heidelberg, 1995
    • A. Galindo, P. Pascual: Quantum Mechanics I, Springer, Berlin, 1990
    • S. Gasiorowicz: Elementary Particle Physics, Wiley & Sons, New York, 1966
    • H. Genz, R. Decker: Symmetrie und Symmetriebrechung in der Physik, Vieweg, Braunschweig, 1991
    • W. Greiner, B. Müller: Quantenmechanik, Teil 2: Symmetrien, Harri Deutsch, Frankfurt, 1990
    • R. Jackiw: Introducing scale symmetry, Physics Today 25, January 1972
    • H.F. Jones: Groups, Representations and Physics, Taylor & Francis Group, 1998
    • O. Nachmann: Elementarteilchenphysik - Phänomene und Konzepte, Vieweg, Braunschweig, 1986
    • C. Quigg: Gauge Theories of the Strong, Weak, and Electromagnetic Interactions, Princeton UP, Princeton, 2013
    • G. Rosen: Conformal invariance of maxwell’s equations, American Journal of Physics 40, 1972
    • J. Rosen: Symmetry Rules, Springer, Berlin, 2008
    • R.U. Sexl, H.K. Urbantke: Relativität, Gruppen, Teilchen, Springer, Wien, 1988

    Supplementary and advanced literature

    • M. Böhm, A. Denner, H. Joos: Gauge Theories of the Strong and Electroweak Interaction, Teubner, Stuttgart, 2001
    • M. Schottenloher: Geometrie und Symmetrie in der Physik, Vieweg, Braunschweig, 1995
    • W. Ludwig, C. Falter: Symmetries in Physics, Springer, Berlin, 1988
    • M. Wagner: Gruppentheoretische Methoden in der Physik, Vieweg, Stuttgart, 1998

    The literature is made available to the speakers via the LearnWeb. Further advice concerning complementary literature is given as part of the talk guidance.

  • Topics & schedule

    Date Topic Speaker
    04.11.2020 Preparatory meeting
    02.12.2020 Introduction to the concept of symmetry and the symmetry principle Raphael Bellm
    Fundamentals of group and representation theory
    16.12.2020 Symmetries in quantum mechanics Lennart Küpers
    Permutation group
    13.01.2021 SU(2) and SO(3) Janik Suer
    SU(3) and the quark model
    27.01.2021 Gauge symmetries
    03.02.2021 Symmetry breaking and Goldstone theorem Adrian Paskert        
    Scale symmetry