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Liquid Argon Detector Development

Background

Next-generation neutrino physics experiments require precision particle identification and fine grained 3D imaging. Liquid Argon (LAr) is becoming increasingly recognised as an ideal medium, allowing the possibility of simultaneous ionisation charge, scintillation and Cerenkov light signals in large volumes. We aim at combining this medium with a cost-effective signal readout system in order to jump-start a wide variety of potential applications in neutrino physics. Naturally, it is expected that such a technological break-through would have important consequences for knowledge transfer to other sectors in science, engineering and medical research.

Projects

Our group benefits from a wide range of expertise, hence specific projects combine topics such as experimental, computational and theoretical work:

  • Liquid Argon test-stand
    • Charge transport in liquid and solid argon
    • Thick GEM (gas electron multiplier) operation in condensed argon
    • Electroluminescence studies
    • SiPM (silicon photomultiplier) operation in condensed argon
    • Custom front-end electronics in condensed argon

  • Detector design studies
    • GEANT4 neutrino beam simulation on liquid argon target
    • Neutrino event reconstruction and backgrounds
    • Finite element calculations
    • Ray-tracing, Cerenkov light production and charged particle optics

  • Exploration of the physics potential for various possible detector applications
    • Neutrino oscillation studies using LAr detectors
    • Physics potential of LAr detectors for astrophysical neutrino sources


Our efforts in Detector Design studies and the physics potential of LAr detectors are now embedded in the EU-FP7 funded project LAGUNA-LBNO, starting September 2011.

As of September 2013, we are members of the LBNF collaboration, which recently evolved into the DUNE collaboration.