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Digging for dark matter: Spectral analysis and discovery potential of paleo-detectors
Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, Department of Physics. Stockholm University, Faculty of Science, The Oskar Klein Centre for Cosmo Particle Physics (OKC). Stockholm University, Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics (Nordita).
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2019 (English)In: Physical Review D. Particles and fields, ISSN 0556-2821, E-ISSN 1089-4918, Vol. 99, no 4, article id 043541Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Paleo-detectors are a recently proposed method for the direct detection of dark matter (DM). In such detectors, one would search for the persistent damage features left by DM–nucleus interactions in ancient minerals. Initial sensitivity projections have shown that paleo-detectors could probe much of the remaining weakly interacting massive particle (WIMP) parameter space. In this paper, we improve upon the cut-and-count approach previously used to estimate the sensitivity by performing a full spectral analysis of the background- and DM-induced signal spectra. We consider two scenarios for the systematic errors on the background spectra: (i) systematic errors on the normalization only, and (ii) systematic errors on the shape of the backgrounds. We find that the projected sensitivity is rather robust to imperfect knowledge of the backgrounds. Finally, we study how well the parameters of the true WIMP model could be reconstructed in the hypothetical case of a WIMP discovery.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2019. Vol. 99, no 4, article id 043541
National Category
Physical Sciences
Research subject
Theoretical Physics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:su:diva-167405DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevD.99.043541ISI: 000459913000001OAI: oai:DiVA.org:su-167405DiVA, id: diva2:1299815
Available from: 2019-03-28 Created: 2019-03-28 Last updated: 2019-04-25Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Dark Matter, Ancient Rocks, a Band of Higgs Bosons, and a Big Collider: or, Models of New Physics and Some Ways to Probe Them
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Dark Matter, Ancient Rocks, a Band of Higgs Bosons, and a Big Collider: or, Models of New Physics and Some Ways to Probe Them
2019 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The past ~ 50 years have seen a remarkable success of particle physics. In the 1970s, the Standard Model was formulated and in 2012 its final ingredient, the Higgs boson, was discovered at the Large Hadron Collider (LHC). The Standard Model describes virtually all particle physics observable in the laboratory. However, despite this success, the Standard Model has a number of shortcomings. Some problems stem from its mathematical structure, most famously the hierarchy problem. Further, the Standard Model fails to describe the composition of our Universe, for example, it cannot explain the observed Dark Matter. Thus, the need for physics beyond the Standard Model is clear. A long series of experiments has been conducted to search for this new physics. Alas, these experiments came up empty handed.This thesis discusses two lines of work: 1) Arguably, the Higgs sector of the Standard Model is its least constrained part and simultaneously intimately related to many of the Standard Model's shortcomings. We discuss models extending the Higgs sector, both in a general and in a supersymmetric setting, and how they can be probed at the LHC. 2) A century after the first evidence for Dark Matter emerged, we still don't know what it is made up of. We discuss some models for Dark Matter, including axions and a particular model for Weakly Interacting Massive Particle (WIMP) Dark Matter. Then, we present some methods to search for WIMP Dark Matter, focusing on paleo-detectors, a proposed method where one would search for the traces of WIMP-nucleus interactions left in ancient minerals. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Stockholm: Department of Physics, Stockholm University, 2019. p. 89
Keywords
particle phenomenology, supersymmetry, dark matter, higgs boson
National Category
Physical Sciences
Research subject
Theoretical Physics
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:su:diva-167406 (URN)978-91-7797-713-1 (ISBN)978-91-7797-714-8 (ISBN)
Public defence
2019-06-12, sal FB52, AlbaNova universitetscentrum, Roslagstullsbacken 21, Stockholm, 13:00 (English)
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Note

At the time of the doctoral defense, the following papers were unpublished and had a status as follows: Paper 3: Accepted. Paper 8: Manuscript.

Available from: 2019-05-20 Created: 2019-03-28 Last updated: 2019-05-21Bibliographically approved

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Baum, SebastianDrukier, Andrzej K.Freese, KatherineStengel, Patrick
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Department of PhysicsThe Oskar Klein Centre for Cosmo Particle Physics (OKC)Nordic Institute for Theoretical Physics (Nordita)
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