Constraint on the matter-antimatter symmetry-violating phase in neutrino oscillations
Nature Springer Nature 580:7803 (2020) 339-344
Abstract:The charge-conjugation and parity-reversal (CP) symmetry of fundamental particles is a symmetry between matter and antimatter. Violation of this CP symmetry was first observed in 19641, and CP violation in the weak interactions of quarks was soon established2. Sakharov proposed3 that CP violation is necessary to explain the observed imbalance of matter and antimatter abundance in the Universe. However, CP violation in quarks is too small to support this explanation. So far, CP violation has not been observed in non-quark elementary particle systems. It has been shown that CP violation in leptons could generate the matter–antimatter disparity through a process called leptogenesis4. Leptonic mixing, which appears in the standard model’s charged current interactions5,6, provides a potential source of CP violation through a complex phase δCP, which is required by some theoretical models of leptogenesis7,8,9. This CP violation can be measured in muon neutrino to electron neutrino oscillations and the corresponding antineutrino oscillations, which are experimentally accessible using accelerator-produced beams as established by the Tokai-to-Kamioka (T2K) and NOvA experiments10,11. Until now, the value of δCP has not been substantially constrained by neutrino oscillation experiments. Here we report a measurement using long-baseline neutrino and antineutrino oscillations observed by the T2K experiment that shows a large increase in the neutrino oscillation probability, excluding values of δCP that result in a large increase in the observed antineutrino oscillation probability at three standard deviations (3σ). The 3σ confidence interval for δCP, which is cyclic and repeats every 2π, is [−3.41, −0.03] for the so-called normal mass ordering and [−2.54, −0.32] for the inverted mass ordering. Our results indicate CP violation in leptons and our method enables sensitive searches for matter–antimatter asymmetry in neutrino oscillations using accelerator-produced neutrino beams. Future measurements with larger datasets will test whether leptonic CP violation is larger than the CP violation in quarks.
Sensitivity of Super-Kamiokande with gadolinium to low energy antineutrinos from pre-supernova emission
Astrophysical Journal American Astronomical Society 885:2 (2019) 133
Abstract:Supernova detection is a major objective of the Super-Kamiokande (SK) experiment. In the next stage of SK (SK-Gd), gadolinium (Gd) sulfate will be added to the detector, which will improve the ability of the detector to identify neutrons. A core-collapse supernova (CCSN) will be preceded by an increasing flux of neutrinos and antineutrinos, from thermal and weak nuclear processes in the star, over a timescale of hours; some of which may be detected at SK-Gd. This could provide an early warning of an imminent CCSN, hours earlier than the detection of the neutrinos from core collapse. Electron antineutrino detection will rely on inverse beta decay events below the usual analysis energy threshold of SK, so Gd loading is vital to reduce backgrounds while maximizing detection efficiency. Assuming normal neutrino mass ordering, more than 200 events could be detected in the final 12 hr before core collapse for a 15–25 solar mass star at around 200 pc, which is representative of the nearest red supergiant to Earth, α-Ori (Betelgeuse). At a statistical false alarm rate of 1 per century, detection could be up to 10 hr before core collapse, and a pre-supernova star could be detected by SK-Gd up to 600 pc away. A pre-supernova alert could be provided to the astrophysics community following gadolinium loading.
Measurement of neutron production in atmospheric neutrino interactions at the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory
Physical Review D American Physical Society 99:11 (2019) 112007
Abstract:Neutron production in giga electron volt–scale neutrino interactions is a poorly studied process. We have measured the neutron multiplicities in atmospheric neutrino interactions in the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory experiment and compared them to the prediction of a Monte Carlo simulation using genie and a minimally modified version of geant4. We analyzed 837 days of exposure corresponding to Phase I, using pure heavy water, and Phase II, using a mixture of Cl in heavy water. Neutrons produced in atmospheric neutrino interactions were identified with an efficiency of 15.3% and 44.3%, for Phases I and II respectively. The neutron production is measured as a function of the visible energy of the neutrino interaction and, for charged current quasielastic interaction candidates, also as a function of the neutrino energy. This study is also performed by classifying the complete sample into two pairs of event categories: charged current quasielastic and non charged current quasielastic, and νμ and νe. Results show good overall agreement between data and Monte Carlo for both phases, with some small tension with a statistical significance below 2σ for some intermediate energies.
Search for boosted dark matter interacting with electrons in Super-Kamiokande
Physical Review Letters American Physical Society 120:22 (2018) 221301
Abstract:A search for boosted dark matter using 161.9 kt yr of Super-Kamiokande IV data is presented. We search for an excess of elastically scattered electrons above the atmospheric neutrino background, with a visible energy between 100 MeV and 1 TeV, pointing back to the Galactic center or the Sun. No such excess is observed. Limits on boosted dark matter event rates in multiple angular cones around the Galactic center and Sun are calculated. Limits are also calculated for a baseline model of boosted dark matter produced from cold dark matter annihilation or decay. This is the first experimental search for boosted dark matter from the Galactic center or the Sun interacting in a terrestrial detector.
Search for neutrinos in super-kamiokande associated with the GW170817 neutron-star merger
Astrophysical Journal Letters American Astronomical Society 857:1 (2018) 1-6