Characterization of liquid argon detectors for next generation neutrino physics


  • Call:

    PT-CERN Call 2021/1

  • Academic Year:


  • Domain:


  • Supervisor:

    José Maneira

  • Co-Supervisor:

    Fernando Barao

  • Institution:

    Universidade de Lisboa

  • Host Institution:

    Laboratório de Instrumentação e Física Experimental de Partículas

  • Abstract:

    The question of how neutrinos may be related to the origin of the matter-antimatter asymmetry in the Universe is one of the fundamental goals of Particle Physics today, and the central motivation to accurately measure long baseline neutrino oscillations with the next generation of experiments. The technology of liquid argon time projection chambers (LAr TPCs) allows for massive detectors with excellent tracking and calorimetry -- all crucial capabilities to meet the requirements of the next generation of experiments. In this technique, particles ionize the argon, creating free electrons that drift in an intense electric field and are collected in wire anodes planes, with the measured time providing the drift length. A full characterization of the electric field uniformity and the charge attenuation along the drift are essential to guarantee a precise 3D reconstruction of the neutrino interaction and its energy. This project will be based on the development of calibration and characterization techniques of LAr TPCs with cosmic ray muons, intense UV laser beams, and possibly a dedicated radiation source. It will be focused on the DUNE experiment and its prototype at CERN, ProtoDUNE. New calibration systems will be installed in ProtoDUNE, with the aim of taking data from 2022 onwards. The commissioning and data analysis of ProtoDUNE2 and its calibration systems will be the central part of this work plan, that will conclude with using those results to better estimate the performance of the future DUNE far detector. The candidate will integrate the CERN Neutrino Platform team and will play an active role in the ProtoDUNE2 installation.