Chris Macias, 2022
Title: Neutrino Hunting: Looking Through a UV Lens Scintillation Photon Detection in a Large-Volume Liquid Argon Time Projection Chamber, exposed to a Multi-GeV Charged Particle Beam
Abstract: The Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) will be a world-class neutrino observatory and nucleon decay detector designed to answer fundamental questions about elementary particles and their role in the universe. My dissertation centers on the implementation of technologies used to detect scintillation photon signals in LAr in the context of the DUNE single-phase far detector module design, and features direct contributions to the Photon Detection System (PDS) deployed in the ProtoDUNE Large-Volume Liquid Argon Time Projection Chamber (LArTPC) prototype. The PDS is needed for non-beam event timing, such as atmospheric neutrinos, proton decay, and supernova detection. The PDS also provides a prompt signal for microsecond event time determination, which improves the LArTPC’s spatial localization, enables accurate ionization-signal-attenuation, and even provides calorimetry.
The focus of my thesis is using scintillation light detection in a large-volume LArTPC, to understand the total energy deposition and how we can use this information to understand the underlying physics of neutrino oscillations, the neutrino mass hierarchy, CP-Violation, supernova detection, and searches for nucleon decay.
Our collaborative achievements have included understanding test-beam data for different particle types at momenta 0.3 – 7 GeV/c. Further, it has been key in validating a full-scale DUNE detector technology and engineering components, continuing to demonstrate its long-term operational stability of all detector components.
The analysis of ProtoDUNE, including my core thesis work on Scintillation Photon Detection in LArTPC, exposed to a multi-GeV charged particle beam, is shown in our published paper . The construction, installation, and operation of DUNE’s first full-scale prototype, ProtoDUNE, detector is described in our technical paper .