140 research outputs found

    Exploring a Non-Minimal Sterile Neutrino Model Involving Decay at IceCube and Beyond

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    We study the phenomenology of neutrino decay together with neutrino oscillations in the context of eV-scale sterile neutrinos. We review the formalism of visible neutrino decay in which one of the decay products is a neutrino that potentially can be observed. We apply the formalism developed for decay to the recent sterile neutrino search performed by IceCube with TeV neutrinos. We show that for ν4\nu_4 lifetime τ4/m41016eV1s\tau_4/m_4 \lesssim 10^{-16} {\rm eV^{-1}s}, the interpretation of the high-energy IceCube analysis can be significantly changed.Comment: 12 pages, 7 figures. Find code at: https://github.com/arguelles/nuSQUIDSDeca

    Demonstrating a directional detector based on neon for characterizing high energy neutrons

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    MITPC is a gas-based time projection chamber used for detecting fast, MeV-scale neutrons. The standard version of the detector relies on a mixture of 600 torr gas composed of 87.5% ⁴He and 12.5% CF₄ for precisely measuring the energy and direction of neutron-induced nuclear recoils. We describe studies performed with a prototype detector investigating the use of Ne, as a replacement for ⁴He, in the gas mixture. Our discussion focuses on the advantages of Ne as the fast neutron target for high energy neutron events (lesssim100 MeV) and a demonstration that the mixture will be effective for this event class. We find that the achievable gain and transverse diffusion of drifting electrons in the Ne mixture are acceptable and that the detector uptime lost due to voltage breakdowns in the amplification plane is negligible, compared to ~ 20% with the ⁴He mixture.National Science Foundation (U.S.) (NSF-PHY- 1505855

    OBSERVATION AND CHARACTERIZATION OF A COSMIC MUON NEUTRINO FLUX FROM THE NORTHERN HEMISPHERE USING SIX YEARS OF ICECUBE DATA

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    The IceCube Collaboration has previously discovered a high-energy astrophysical neutrino flux using neutrino events with interaction vertices contained within the instrumented volume of the IceCube detector. We present a complementary measurement using charged current muon neutrino events where the interaction vertex can be outside this volume. As a consequence of the large muon range the effective area is significantly larger but the field of view is restricted to the Northern Hemisphere. IceCube data from 2009 through 2015 have been analyzed using a likelihood approach based on the reconstructed muon energy and zenith angle. At the highest neutrino energies between 194 TeV and 7.8 PeV a significant astrophysical contribution is observed, excluding a purely atmospheric origin of these events at 5.6σ significance. The data are well described by an isotropic, unbroken power-law flux with a normalization at 100 TeV neutrino energy of (0.90 [subscript -0.27] [superscript +0.30]) x 10 [superscript -18] GeV [superscript -1] cm[superscript -2]s[superscript -1]sr[superscript -1] and a hard spectral index of ɣ = 2.13 ± 0.13. The observed spectrum is harder in comparison to previous IceCube analyses with lower energy thresholds which may indicate a break in the astrophysical neutrino spectrum of unknown origin. The highest-energy event observed has a reconstructed muon energy of 4.5 ± 1.2 PeV which implies a probability of less than 0.005% for this event to be of atmospheric origin. Analyzing the arrival directions of all events with reconstructed muon energies above 200 TeV no correlation with known γ-ray sources was found. Using the high statistics of atmospheric neutrinos we report the current best constraints on a prompt atmospheric muon neutrino flux originating from charmed meson decays which is below 1.06 in units of the flux normalization of the model in Enberg et al.United States. Dept. of EnergyNational Science Foundation (U.S.). Division of Polar ProgramsNational Science Foundation (U.S.). Division of PhysicsUniversity of Wisconsin. Alumni Research FoundationUniversity of Wisconsin. Grid Laboratory of WisconsinOpen Science GridLouisiana Optical Network Initiativ

    Search for annihilating dark matter in the Sun with 3 years of IceCube data

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    We present results from an analysis looking for dark matter annihilation in the Sun with the IceCube neutrino telescope. Gravitationally trapped dark matter in the Sun’s core can annihilate into Standard Model particles making the Sun a source of GeV neutrinos. IceCube is able to detect neutrinos with energies > 100 GeV while its low-energy infill array DeepCore extends this to > 10 GeV. This analysis uses data gathered in the austral winters between May 2011 and May 2014, corresponding to 532 days of livetime when the Sun, being below the horizon, is a source of up-going neutrino events, easiest to discriminate against the dominant background of atmospheric muons. The sensitivity is a factor of two to four better than previous searches due to additional statistics and improved analysis methods involving better background rejection and reconstructions. The resultant upper limits on the spin-dependent dark matter-proton scattering cross section reach down to 1.46 × 10 - 5  pb for a dark matter particle of mass 500 GeV annihilating exclusively into τ + τ - particles. These are currently the most stringent limits on the spin-dependent dark matter-proton scattering cross section for WIMP masses above 50 GeV

    The Contribution of Fermi-2LAC Blazars to Diffuse TEV-PEV Neutrino Flux

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    The recent discovery of a diffuse cosmic neutrino flux extending up to PeV energies raises the question of which astrophysical sources generate this signal. Blazars are one class of extragalactic sources which may produce such high-energy neutrinos. We present a likelihood analysis searching for cumulative neutrino emission from blazars in the 2nd Fermi-LAT AGN catalog (2LAC) using IceCube neutrino data set 2009-12, which was optimized for the detection of individual sources. In contrast to those in previous searches with IceCube, the populations investigated contain up to hundreds of sources, the largest one being the entire blazar sample in the 2LAC catalog. No significant excess is observed, and upper limits for the cumulative flux from these populations are obtained. These constrain the maximum contribution of 2LAC blazars to the observed astrophysical neutrino flux to 27% or less between around 10 TeV and 2 PeV, assuming the equipartition of flavors on Earth and a single power-law spectrum with a spectral index of −2.5. We can still exclude the fact that 2LAC blazars (and their subpopulations) emit more than 50% of the observed neutrinos up to a spectral index as hard as −2.2 in the same energy range. Our result takes into account the fact that the neutrino source count distribution is unknown, and it does not assume strict proportionality of the neutrino flux to the measured 2LAC γ-ray signal for each source. Additionally, we constrain recent models for neutrino emission by blazars.National Science Foundation (U.S.

    Very high-energy gamma-ray follow-up program using neutrino triggers from IceCube

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    We describe and report the status of a neutrino-triggered program in IceCube that generates real-time alerts for gamma-ray follow-up observations by atmospheric-Cherenkov telescopes (MAGIC and VERITAS). While IceCube is capable of monitoring the whole sky continuously, high-energy gamma-ray telescopes have restricted fields of view and in general are unlikely to be observing a potential neutrino-flaring source at the time such neutrinos are recorded. The use of neutrino-triggered alerts thus aims at increasing the availability of simultaneous multi-messenger data during potential neutrino flaring activity, which can increase the discovery potential and constrain the phenomenological interpretation of the high-energy emission of selected source classes (e.g. blazars). The requirements of a fast and stable online analysis of potential neutrino signals and its operation are presented, along with first results of the program operating between 14 March 2012 and 31 December 2015

    A time-independent search for neutrinos from galaxy clusters with IceCube

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