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Special HEP: Jeff Hartnell

Recent Papers of HEP: Jeff Hartnell

Description: Host: Svoboda
Title: SNO+ and Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay
Location: TBA

One of the most important open questions in neutrino physics is the
question of whether neutrinos are Majorana or Dirac particles. Attempts
to detect the (possible) Majorana nature of neutrinos focus around the
double beta decay process. If neutrinoless double beta decay were
observed, it would not only prove that neutrinos are Majorana particles,
but it would also provide a measurement of the neutrino mass. Loading
the double beta decay isotope 130Te into the SNO+ liquid scintillator
has the potential to allow for an extremely powerful double beta decay
search. We have developed a brand new technique to do this, and to
remove other contaminants that might otherwise interfere with the
measurement. Although the energy resolution of the detector will not be
as good as that of other existing experiments, the amount of isotope
that could be suspended in the scintillator is very large. This means
that SNO+ can hope to see a large enough number of neutrinoless double
beta decay events that we can fit to the energy spectra of the 2
neutrino and 0 neutrino signals (and those of the radioactive
backgrounds), making us much less dependent on energy resolution than
competing experiments. In fact, based on some preliminary simulations,
if we loaded the scintillator with 0.3% natural Te (which would contain
800kg of 130Te isotope) we would be able to detect neutrinoless double
beta decay at neutrino masses approaching the range of the “inverted
hierarchy,” a particularly interesting regime for theoretical
predictions related to one of two possible ways for the 3 neutrino
masses to be ordered. A 3% loading, correspond to 8 tons of 130Te
isotope in the detector, would give us the potential to probe the
majority of this interesting range with high sensitivity.
Date: Friday, May 31, 2013
Time: 4:10pm-5:10pm
Duration: 60 minutes
Access: Public
Created by: High-Energy Seminars
Updated: Wednesday, May 29, 2013 7:56am
Send Reminder: Yes  -  4 hours before event

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