4th Summer School and Internship Programme at CTP
CTP - BUE (8-18 July 2024)


We are happy to announce our fourth annual session of the Summer School and Internship Programme, organized by the Centre for Theoretical Physics (CTP) at The British University in Egypt (BUE). This is a pedagogical scheme aimed at advanced undergraduate and beginning postgraduate students in physics, mathematics, or engineering. It allows highly motivated potential researchers to attend short courses on scientific topics not widely taught or researched in Egypt; such as general relativity; cosmology, large scale structure, and galaxy formation; quantum field theory; and black hole physics. Among our motivations is to provide a taste of active research areas in fundamental physics and astrophysics; to familiarize students with topical problems and proposed solutions. This year's programme will include an extended discussion of currently topical issues in galaxy formation and evolution (including, time permitting, turbulence in the interstellar medium), as well as an introduction to the quantum many body problem. As in the past couple of years, we also expect to have lectures on the standard model of particle physics and a taste of physics beyond it. Compared to previous years, we plan to place more emphasis on projects and training, involving numerical methods, symbolic manipulation packages and machine learning.


  • Adel Awad (Ain Shams University and CTP, BUE)
  • Amr El-Zant (CTP, BUE)
  • Abdelhamid Galal (Cairo University)
  • Alexey Golovnev (CTP, BUE)
  • Ahmad Hammad (IPNS KEK, Japan)
  • Mahmoud Hashim (CTP, BUE)
  • ElSayed Lashin (Ain Shams University)
  • Ahmed Moursy (Cairo University)


  • General Relativity (Adel Awad)
    • Foundations of GR: General covariance and the equivalence principle
    • The field equations
    • Black hole physics
  • Physical Cosmology (Amr El-Zant)
    • The maximally symmetric universe: Evidence and evolution
    • Evolution of its components: Matter, radiation and dark energy
    • Distance measures and cosmological parameter estimation
    • The hot big bang and the advent of the cosmic microwave background
    • Elementary introduction to parameter estimation from the CMB
    • Growth of perturbations and large-scale structure in the Universe
    • Press-Schecter formalism and the dark halo mass function
    • Galaxy formation in context of the standard cosmological model: successes and challenges
    • Turbulence on Earth and in the universe (optional)
  • Quantum Field Theory and Inflationary Cosmology (Alexey Golovnev)
    • From classical mechanics to fields
    • The structure of quantum mechanics
    • Free field quantization
    • Inflation
    • Quantum fluctuations as sources of cosmological perturbations
    • Introduction cosmological perturbation theory
    • Interactions between scalar fields
  • The Standard Model of Particle Physics (ElSayed Lashin)
    • Weak interactions (Fermi model and its discontents)
    • Higgs mechanism
    • The standard model
  • Many Body Quantum Systems and Theoretical Condensed Matter (Abdelhamid Galal)
    • Second quantization
    • BCS theory
    • Universality, criticality and renormalization
    • Phenomenology in condensed matter systems: Ginsburg-Landau theories
  • Deep Learning methods for pattern recognition (Ahmed Hammad Online, + Training sessions)
    • Multi-Layers perceptron for MNIST digits recognition
    • Neural Network and explainable AI
    • Variational Auto Encoder for generating Animation faces
    • Vision Transformer for Fashion MNIST recognition
    • Physics Example
  • Sketch of Grand Unification Theories and Supersymmetry (Ahmed Moursy)
    • Grand unified theories
  • Statistical methods in Astronomy (Mahmoud Hashim, Optional)
    • Probability and Statistical Distributions
    • Classical Statistical Inference
    • Bayesian Statistical Inference

Project Descriptions:

  • Power Spectra of Turbulent Galactic Gas (Supervisors: Amr El-Zant and Mahmoud Hashim):

    Galaxies contain gas that is energetically driven by various processes, such as mergers and infall of gas onto galaxies, gravitational contraction of gas clouds within galaxies the differential in discs, and supernovae explosions within the clouds. The gaseous interstellar medium, thus driven, is highly turbulent, with Fourier power spectrum showing a scale-invariant power law on a very wide range of scales. The characterization of the density and velocity fluctuations associated with the (compressible) turbulence is important for understanding galaxy formation, structure and evolution,. But its origin is still intensely debated. This is a developing topic, driven by incoming data, of higher resolution and cosmic depth, and ever more sophisticated numerical modelling. Students will work on numerical simulation (and, time permitting) actual data from the state of the art PHANGS survey. Required skills and background: Some knowledge of Python; basic familiarity with Fourier transforms (or at least series); some knowledge of hydrodynamics helpful.

  • Confronting alternative ΛCDM models against cosmological observations (Supervisors: Amr El-Zant and Mahmoud Hashim):

    In this project we are going to test different alternative models to the standard model of cosmology – ΛCDM - as possible solutions to problems that it faces, e.g., 𝐻0 and 𝜎8 tensions. We will use Bayesian inference (or likelihood analysis) to test these models against different cosmological datasets (Supernovae, cosmic microwave background etc...). Required skills: Basic Knowledge of cosmology (at the level of the book Introduction to Cosmology by Andrew Liddle or Amr El-Zant’s lectures). Intermediate knowledge of Python; Basic knowledge of Linux.

  • GR Tensor (Supervisor: Waleed El Hanafy):

    General Relativity is the most successful theory describing gravity so far. The theory encodes the gravitational field as a curvature of spacetime. It has many applications in astrophysics and cosmology. Indeed, these applications intersect with general area of differential geometry, which needs some basic knowledge of tensor calculus. Fortunately, the GRTensor II package provides an easy tool to calculate tensor components on curved spacetimes, specified in terms of a given metric. The package contains a library of standard definitions designed for use in the field of general relativity. GRTensor II is not a standalone package, but requires an algebraic engine (originally developed to run with different versions of Maple). A limited version has been designed to run with Mathematica. GRTensor II and related software and documentation are distributed free of charge, please visit the URL http://grtensor.phy.queensu.ca/ and download the Maple version of GRTensor II. For more details about the package installation see the documentation link in the aforementioned URL. Three group projects will be offered during the programme, each consisting of two to three members: Project I: Schwarzschild metric, which describes the geometry of a spherically symmetric spacetime configuration. The general relativistic solution of an empty space is suitable for solar system applications. Project II: Kerr metric, which describes the geometry of an axially symmetric spacetime configuration. The general relativistic solution of an empty space is suitable for rotating black hole applications. Project III: Friedmann–Lemaître–Robertson–Walker (FLRW) metric, which describes the geometry of a homogeneous and isotropic spacetime configuration. The general relativistic solution is suitable for cosmological applications.

  • Simulation of RPC gas particle detectors (Supervisor: Yasser Assran):

    The resistive plate chamber (RPC) is a fast gaseous detector, which consists of two parallel plates; a positively charged anode and a negatively charged cathode, both made of a very high resistivity plastic material and separated by a gas volume. It is used in many high-energy physics experiments due to its simple design, construction, good time resolution, high efficiency, and low-cost production. This project aims to find the ideal operating conditions of the CMS RPCs using Garfield++ as simulation software. It represents the effect of temperature on various RPC parameters. The electron transport parameters like drift velocity, Townsend coefficient and Diffusion coefficient have been computed under different temperatures and gas mixtures using MAGBOLTZ. While the primary ionization number and energy loss have been studied using HEED. We used the nearly exact Boundary Element Method (neBEM) solver in the calculation of the weighting field and electric field. Finally, we applied Ramo’s theorem to calculate the induced signal.

  • GEM detector simulation using Garfield package (Supervisor: Yasser Assran):

    Garfield is a computer program for the detailed simulation of two and three- dimensional GEM detector. It has an interface to the Magboltz program for the computation of electron transport properties in arbitrary gas mixtures. Garfield also has an interface with the Heed program to simulate the ionization of gas molecules by particles traversing the chamber. Transport of particles, including diffusion, avalanches, and current induction is treated in three dimensions irrespective of the technique used to compute the fields. In this work, we use Garfield to calculate the transport parameters like drift velocity, longitudinal diffusion, transverse diffusion Townsend coefficient attachment coefficient, and Lorentz angle.

  • Probing the standard model gauge boson at LHC (Supervisor: Sherif Elgammal):

    The standard model (SM) of particle physics is a very successful model for describing the interactions between the elementary particles (leptons and quarks) and between the elementary particles and the gauge bosons (W+, W- and Z) in the 80's at LEP experiment at CERN, which appears as a consequence of the unification between the electromagnetic force and the nuclear weak force. In 2012, both CMS and ATLAS experiments at CERN discovered the SM Higgs boson, which was the last block in the SM. Higgs boson plays important role in our understanding of mass determination of the elementary particles (from Yukawa interaction), and how the gauge bosons acquire masses via Higgs mechanizem. These processes have been produced at the LHC via quark - antiquark Annihilation process in proton-proton collision at 13 TeV. Work plan: performing MC simulation for the production of the SM gauge bosons (W+, W- and Z) via their leptonic decays using Madgraph package. Pre-requested: knowledge of C++, Madgraph and ROOT analysis framework. Needed packages: [1] Madgraph version MG5_aMC_v3_5_0 from https://launchpad.net/mg5amcnlo , [2] Delphes version Delphes-3.5.0 from wget http://cp3.irmp.ucl.ac.be/downloads/Delphes-3.5.0.tar.gz. Please noticed that Madgraph+Pythia8+Delphes can be downloaded together if you follow the instructions given in https://twiki.cern.ch/twiki/bin/view/CMSPublic/MadgraphTutorial.



We particularly welcome applications from undergraduates in physics/astronomy, mathematics or engineering, who have completed their third year of university studies, as well as postgraduate students who have obtained their BSc degree not more than four years ago. Please note that lectures will be in English. Many of the lectures will also be of an advanced nature. To benefit most from the programme, applying students should have working knowledge of English and strong background knowledge in physics and mathematics. They should be familiar with the fundamentals of at least some of the following topics:

  • Classical and Quantum Mechanics
  • Special Relativity
  • Electrodynamics
  • Statistical Mechanics
  • Linear Algebra
  • Differential Equations
  • Mathematical Physics (Fourier analysis being particularly desirable)

Registration and accommodation fees

The registration fee will cover coffee breaks (including pastries, cookies etc.…) but not lunches. Participants can bring their own lunch or choose from many eateries, spanning the whole price and quality range, in or near the BUE campus.. (Information will be provided to successful applicants).
*** EGP 700.
There is a possibility to house participants in the Programme on campus .The total accommodation fee for the ten nights of 8 to 17 July is estimated at
*** EGP 700
This may be subject to slight change, up or down, depending on the number of accepted applicants needing accommodation and as we recieve final prices from the Universityy admistration (and calculate how much difference we can cover from CTP funds). Please indicate on the form whether you will need accommodation. The final price will be stated in offers mailed to succesful applicants who had asked for accommodation.


  • Apllication open: 26 May
  • Deadline for application (form closes): 8 June
  • Mails sent to successful and waiting-list applicants: 17 June
  • Deadline for applicants offered a place to confirm attendance and pay fees: 23 June
  • Offers made to waiting list applicants: 25 June