Disputation: Vanessa Wyrwoll

Vanessa Wyrwoll will defend her thesis "Unique particle beams and energies at CERN applied to radiation testing of electronicsfor the degree of Philosophiae Doctor at the University of Oslo, Faculty of Mathematics and Natural Sciences.

portrait of the candidate

The PhD defence and trial lecture are completely digital. The chair of the defence will moderate the disputation. 

Ex auditorio questions: the chair of the defence will invite the audience to ask ex auditorio questions either oral or written using the chat function in zoom. 


Trial lecture

Time and place: June 21, 2022; 3:00 PM, Zoom

Title: "Overview of the roadmap of Very Large Scale Integration digital technologies and implications for radiation effects in space applications"


Main research findings

This PhD has been focused on the investigation of radiation environments as possible threat for electronics, via experiments and simulations. When a device is mounted on an aircraft, space mission or within a high-energy accelerator complex, the possible risk to the electronic component needs to be known. For space and high-energy accelerator applications, this should already happen in their design phase. Ultra-High Energy (UHE) and Very High Energy (VHE) beams offer a possibility for this, as they can mimic these radiation environments. For that reason, this PhD has focused on the effect of high energy particles on exposed material.

In space, the Galactic Cosmic Radiation (GCR) environment consists of UHE heavy ions and high energy protons, whereas trapped around planets, high density electrons can be found. These particle areas are called “belts” and are induced by the magnetic field of a planet like the Jupiter or the Earth. To estimate the radiation effects and the resulting impact on space applications and electronics on the ground, the nuclear fragmentation and energy deposition mechanisms need to be investigated. This can be done by radiation experiments to study the impact on different electronic devices in dedicated test facilities. When doing such investigations, it is of paramount importance to have the dosimetry and beam parameters under full control since this is the only way to reliable post processing and analysis of the acquired data.

For this PhD, the main tool of investigation has been Monte Carlo simulations using FLUKA and experiments carried out at CERN during the UHE heavy ion test campaigns 2017 and 2018 in the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). These beams have a high penetration depth and therefore offer a convenient possibility to test without opening the sensitive device parts. This enables experiments in air with components put behind each other in the beam line without the need need of a vacuum. Moreover, this way the same particle energy and LET as present in the GCR environment can be used. This is advantageous, since the current standard approach of space application testing is to use heavy ion beams of a lower energy and comparable LET as actually present in space.

As mentioned in the beginning, the radiation environment in space also consists of high-energy electrons as present for example around Jupiter. The influence of these electrons on electronic components has been part of this PhD as well. Possible Single Event Effects (SEEs) related to this radiation type was studied at CERN as well, investigating possible nuclear electron processes caused by a high instantaneous flux.

Candidate contact information

E-mail: vanessa.wyrwoll@uol.de



Adjudication Committee

  • Dr. Laurent Artola, ONERA The French Aerospace Lab, France
  • Dr. Michael P. King, Sandia National Laboratories, USA
  • Associate Professor Nina Frederike Jeppesen Edin, University of Oslo, Norway


  • Professor Ketil Røed, Department of Physics, University of Oslo, Norway
  • Dr. Ruben Garcia Alia, CERN, Geneva, Switzerland
  • Professor Frederic Wrobel, University of Montpellier, CNRS, France
  • Dr. Arto Javanainen, University of Jyväskylä, Finland
  • Professor Björn Poppe, University of Oldenburg, Germany

Chair of defence

Professor Heidi Sandaker, Department of Physics, University of Oslo, Norway



Contact information to Department: Line Trosterud Resvold


Published June 9, 2022 2:47 PM - Last modified Sep. 16, 2022 1:40 PM