104 research outputs found

    Quantum field theoretic approach to neutrino oscillations in matter

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    We consider neutrino oscillations in non-uniform matter in a quantum field theoretic (QFT) approach, in which neutrino production, propagation and detection are considered as a single process. We find the conditions under which the oscillation probability can be sensibly defined and demonstrate how the properly normalized oscillation probability can be obtained in the QFT framework. We derive the evolution equation for the oscillation amplitude and discuss the conditions under which it reduces to the standard Schr\"odinger-like evolution equation. It is shown that, contrary to the common usage, the Schr\"odinger-like evolution equation is not applicable in certain cases, such as oscillations of neutrinos produced in decays of free pions provided that sterile neutrinos with Δm2≳1\Delta m^2\gtrsim 1 eV2^2 exist.Comment: LaTeX, 24 pages + 16 pages of appendices, 1 figure. V2: typos correcte

    Mass hierarchy, 2-3 mixing and CP-phase with Huge Atmospheric Neutrino Detectors

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    We explore the physics potential of multi-megaton scale ice or water Cherenkov detectors with low (∼1\sim 1 GeV) threshold. Using some proposed characteristics of the PINGU detector setup we compute the distributions of events versus neutrino energy EνE_\nu and zenith angle θz\theta_z, and study their dependence on yet unknown neutrino parameters. The (Eν−θz)(E_\nu - \theta_z) regions are identified where the distributions have the highest sensitivity to the neutrino mass hierarchy, to the deviation of the 2-3 mixing from the maximal one and to the CP-phase. We evaluate significance of the measurements of the neutrino parameters and explore dependence of this significance on the accuracy of reconstruction of the neutrino energy and direction. The effect of degeneracy of the parameters on the sensitivities is also discussed. We estimate the characteristics of future detectors (energy and angle resolution, volume, etc.) required for establishing the neutrino mass hierarchy with high confidence level. We find that the hierarchy can be identified at 3σ3\sigma -- 10σ10\sigma level (depending on the reconstruction accuracies) after 5 years of PINGU operation.Comment: 39 pages, 21 figures. Description of Fig.3 correcte

    Neutrino oscillations: Quantum mechanics vs. quantum field theory

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    A consistent description of neutrino oscillations requires either the quantum-mechanical (QM) wave packet approach or a quantum field theoretic (QFT) treatment. We compare these two approaches to neutrino oscillations and discuss the correspondence between them. In particular, we derive expressions for the QM neutrino wave packets from QFT and relate the free parameters of the QM framework, in particular the effective momentum uncertainty of the neutrino state, to the more fundamental parameters of the QFT approach. We include in our discussion the possibilities that some of the neutrino's interaction partners are not detected, that the neutrino is produced in the decay of an unstable parent particle, and that the overlap of the wave packets of the particles involved in the neutrino production (or detection) process is not maximal. Finally, we demonstrate how the properly normalized oscillation probabilities can be obtained in the QFT framework without an ad hoc normalization procedure employed in the QM approach.Comment: LaTeX, 42 pages, 1 figure; v2: minor clarifications, matches published version; v3: Corrected the discussion of the conditions under which an oscillation probability can be sensibly defined in the QFT approach (sec. 5.2.4

    Searching for sterile neutrinos in ice

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    Oscillation interpretation of the results from the LSND, MiniBooNE and some other experiments requires existence of sterile neutrino with mass ∼1\sim 1 eV and mixing with the active neutrinos ∣Uμ0∣2∼(0.02−0.04)|U_{\mu 0}|^2 \sim (0.02 - 0.04). It has been realized some time ago that existence of such a neutrino affects significantly the fluxes of atmospheric neutrinos in the TeV range which can be tested by the IceCube Neutrino Observatory. In view of the first IceCube data release we have revisited the oscillations of high energy atmospheric neutrinos in the presence of one sterile neutrino. Properties of the oscillation probabilities are studied in details for various mixing schemes both analytically and numerically. The energy spectra and angular distributions of the νμ−\nu_\mu-events have been computed for the simplest νs−\nu_s-mass, and νs−νμ\nu_s - \nu_\mu mixing schemes and confronted with the IceCube data. An illustrative statistical analysis of the present data shows that in the νs−\nu_s-mass mixing case the sterile neutrinos with parameters required by LSND/MiniBooNE can be excluded at about 3σ3\sigma level. The νs−νμ\nu_s- \nu_\mu mixing scheme, however, can not be ruled out with currently available IceCube data.Comment: 41 pages, 16 figures. Accepted for publication in JHEP. Minor changes from the previous versio

    Identifying the Neutrino mass Ordering with INO and NOvA

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    The relatively large value of θ13\theta_{13} established recently by the Daya Bay reactor experiment opens the possibility to determine the neutrino mass ordering with experiments currently under construction. We investigate synergies between the NOvA long-baseline accelerator experiment with atmospheric neutrino data from the India-based Neutrino Observatory (INO). We identify the requirements on energy and direction reconstruction and detector mass for INO necessary for a significant sensitivity. If neutrino energy and direction reconstruction at the level of 10% and 10 degree can be achieved by INO a determination of the neutrino mass ordering seems possible around 2020.Comment: 18 pages, 8 figures, minor improvements and clarifications, new panel in fig. 7, version to appear in JHEP, typo in eq. 4 correcte

    Helicitogenesis: WIMPy baryogenesis with sterile neutrinos and other realizations

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    We propose a mechanism for baryogenesis from particle decays or annihilations that can work at the TeV scale. Some heavy particles annihilate or decay into a heavy sterile neutrino N (with M ≳ 0.5 TeV) and a ¿light¿ one ν (with m ≪ 100 GeV), generating an asymmetry among the two helicity degrees of freedom of ν. This asymmetry is partially transferred to Standard Model leptons via fast Yukawa interactions and reprocessed into a baryon asymmetry by the electroweak sphalerons. We illustrate this mechanism in a WIMPy baryogenesis model where the helicity asymmetry is generated in the annihilation of dark matter. This model connects the baryon asymmetry, dark matter, and neutrino masses. Moreover it also complements previous studies on general requirements for baryogenesis from dark matter annihilation. Finally we discuss other possible realizations of this helicitogenesis mechanism

    Supersymmetric mass spectra and the seesaw type-I scale

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    We calculate supersymmetric mass spectra with cMSSM boundary conditions and a type-I seesaw mechanism added to explain current neutrino data. Using published, estimated errors on SUSY mass observables for a combined LHC+ILC analysis, we perform a theoretical χ2\chi^2 analysis to identify parameter regions where pure cMSSM and cMSSM plus seesaw type-I might be distinguishable with LHC+ILC data. The most important observables are determined to be the (left) smuon and selectron masses and the splitting between them, respectively. Splitting in the (left) smuon and selectrons is tiny in most of cMSSM parameter space, but can be quite sizeable for large values of the seesaw scale, mSSm_{SS}. Thus, for very roughly mSS≥1014m_{SS} \ge 10^{14} GeV hints for type-I seesaw might appear in SUSY mass measurements. Since our numerical results depend sensitively on forecasted error bars, we discuss in some detail the accuracies, which need to be achieved, before a realistic analysis searching for signs of type-I seesaw in SUSY spectra can be carried out.Comment: 17 pages, 7 figure

    Physics of Neutron Star Kicks

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    It is no longer necessary to `sell' the idea of pulsar kicks, the notion that neutron stars receive a large velocity (a few hundred to a thousand km s−1^{-1}) at birth. However, the origin of the kicks remains mysterious. We review the physics of different kick mechanisms, including hydrodynamically driven, neutrino and magnetically driven kicks.Comment: 8 pages including 1 figure. To be published in "Stellar Astrophysics" (Pacific Rim Conference Proceedings), (Kluwer Pub.

    Two experiments for the price of one? -- The role of the second oscillation maximum in long baseline neutrino experiments

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    We investigate the quantitative impact that data from the second oscillation maximum has on the performance of wide band beam neutrino oscillation experiments. We present results for the physics sensitivities to standard three flavor oscillation, as well as results for the sensitivity to non-standard interactions. The quantitative study is performed using an experimental setup similar to the Fermilab to DUSEL Long Baseline Neutrino Experiment (LBNE). We find that, with the single exception of sensitivity to the mass hierarchy, the second maximum plays only a marginal role due to the experimental difficulties to obtain a statistically significant and sufficiently background-free event sample at low energies. This conclusion is valid for both water Cherenkov and liquid argon detectors. Moreover, we confirm that non-standard neutrino interactions are very hard to distinguish experimentally from standard three-flavor effects and can lead to a considerable loss of sensitivity to \theta_{13}, the mass hierarchy and CP violation.Comment: RevTex 4.1, 23 pages, 10 figures; v2: Typos corrected, very minor clarifications; matches published version; v3: Fixed a typo in the first equation in sec. III

    Mass hierarchy discrimination with atmospheric neutrinos in large volume ice/water Cherenkov detectors

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    Large mass ice/water Cherenkov experiments, optimized to detect low energy (1-20 GeV) atmospheric neutrinos, have the potential to discriminate between normal and inverted neutrino mass hierarchies. The sensitivity depends on several model and detector parameters, such as the neutrino flux profile and normalization, the Earth density profile, the oscillation parameter uncertainties, and the detector effective mass and resolution. A proper evaluation of the mass hierarchy discrimination power requires a robust statistical approach. In this work, the Toy Monte Carlo, based on an extended unbinned likelihood ratio test statistic, was used. The effect of each model and detector parameter, as well as the required detector exposure, was then studied. While uncertainties on the Earth density and atmospheric neutrino flux profiles were found to have a minor impact on the mass hierarchy discrimination, the flux normalization, as well as some of the oscillation parameter (\Delta m^2_{31}, \theta_{13}, \theta_{23}, and \delta_{CP}) uncertainties and correlations resulted critical. Finally, the minimum required detector exposure, the optimization of the low energy threshold, and the detector resolutions were also investigated.Comment: 23 pages, 16 figure
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