Calibration of the logarithmic-periodic dipole antenna (LPDA) radio stations at the Pierre Auger Observatory using an octocopter

The Pierre Auger Collaboration

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An in-situ calibration of a logarithmic periodic dipole antenna with a frequency coverage of 30MHz to 80MHz is performed. Such antennas are part of a radio station system used for detection of cosmic ray induced air showers at the Engineering Radio Array of the Pierre Auger Observatory, the so-called Auger Engineering Radio Array (AERA). The directional and frequency characteristics of the broadband antenna are investigated using a remotely piloted aircraft carrying a small transmitting antenna. The antenna sensitivity is described by the vector effective length relating the measured voltage with the electric-field components perpendicular to the incoming signal direction. The horizontal and meridional components are determined with an overall uncertainty of 7.4+0.9 -0.3% and 10.3+2.8 -1.7% respectively. The measurement is used to correct a simulated response of the frequency and directional response of the antenna. In addition, the influence of the ground conductivity and permittivity on the antenna response is simulated. Both have a negligible influence given the ground conditions measured at the detector site. The overall uncertainties of the vector effective length components result in an uncertainty of 8.8+2.1 -1.3% in the square root of the energy fluence for incoming signal directions with zenith angles smaller than 60°.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article numberT10005
JournalJournal of Instrumentation
Issue number10
StatePublished - Oct 2017

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Instrumentation
  • Mathematical Physics


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