Wednesday, April 10, 2013

1304.2553 (Sebastian Böser et al.)

Detecting extra-galactic supernova neutrinos in the Antarctic ice    [PDF]

Sebastian Böser, Marek Kowalski, Lukas Schulte, Nora Linn Strotjohann, Markus Voge
Building on the technological success of the IceCube neutrino telescope, we outline a prospective low-energy extension that utilizes the clear ice of the South Pole. Aiming at a 10 Mton effective volume and a 10 MeV threshold, the detector would provide sufficient sensitivity to detect neutrino bursts from core-collapse supernovae (SNe) in nearby galaxies. The detector geometry and required density of instrumentation are discussed along with the requirements to control the various sources of background. We find that the resulting detector will be able to detect SNe from beyond 10 Mpc, delivering between 11 and 46 regular core-collapse SN detections per decade. It would further allow to study more speculative phenomena, such as optically dark (failed) SNe, where the collapse proceeds directly to a black hole, at a detection rate similar to the regular SNe. We find that the biggest technological challenge lies in the required large number of large area photo-sensors, with simultaneous strict limits on the allowed noise rates. If both can be realized, the detector concept we present will reach the required sensitivity in a cost effective manner and hence offers a route to future routine observations of SNe with neutrinos.
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