Most book recommendations I've seen are usually geared toward theoretical understanding. It would be nice to know at least one or two classic experimental physics books.

e.g. from Carl Brannen's question in Products of Gaussian stochastic process variables : "In the classic experimental physics text "Statistical Theory of Signal Detection" by Carl. W. Helstrom, ..."

another e.g. From http://pdg.lbl.gov/2011/reviews/rpp2011-rev-particle-detectors-accel.pdf I can at least find several books in experimental HEP, but they seem to be too specialized. Compare this with Carl Brannen's book, which appears to discuss about the common unifying theme (zeitgeist, sense, or whatever) of experimental physics.


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  • $\begingroup$ @Carl Brannen Thank you for that particular question. The relationship between QM/QFT and stochastic process/signal processing seems to be interesting. I just wish there exists a book complementary to this one amazon.com/… (since I'm doing physics...) $\endgroup$ – pcr Mar 7 '12 at 23:36
  • $\begingroup$ I added it to the book recommendations question, since we don't already have a general question on experimental particle physics. (Did you mean to focus on particle physics specifically? If not, I think this would be too broad.) $\endgroup$ – David Z Mar 7 '12 at 23:40
  • $\begingroup$ There area lot of books which function as a "bible" for various disciplines, but experimental technique in most sub-fields is in constant flux, and there is a reasonably regular turn over (or at least a succession of new editions). $\endgroup$ – dmckee Mar 7 '12 at 23:42
  • $\begingroup$ I see. Each bibles are useful only in their own disciplines because of the learning curve required in familiarizing with the jargons (even though they might contain roughly the same kind of insights/wisdom). So I was expecting of something along the lines of Carl Brannen's book, which could be useful for experimental physicists in general -> hence "broad". Or, maybe my question is too off the mark? $\endgroup$ – pcr Mar 8 '12 at 0:15

When I was in grad school in the mid and late 1990s Leo's book on nuclear and particle physics was "the manual" for the bits and pieces that went into a experiment.

However, it is now a bit long in the tooth as it doesn't do an adequate job covering the segmented solid state detectors that have come into wide use in the mean time, nor does it talk about liquid argon TPCs at all.


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