Neutrino-electron elastic scattering for flux determination at the DUNE oscillation experiment

Abstract

We study the feasibility of using neutrino-electron elastic scattering to measure the neutrino flux in the DUNE neutrino oscillation experiment. The neutrino-electron scattering cross section is precisely known, and the kinematics of the reaction allow determination of the incoming neutrino energy by precise measurement of the energy and angle of the recoiling electron. For several possible near detectors, we perform an analysis of their ability to measure neutrino flux in the presence of backgrounds and uncertainties. With realistic assumptions about detector masses, we find that a liquid argon detector, even with limitations due to angular resolution, is able to perform better than less dense detectors with more precise event-by-event neutrino energy measurements. We find that the absolute flux normalization uncertainty can be reduced from ~8% to ~2%, and the uncertainty on the flux shape can be reduced by ~20-30%

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