Trinity: An air-shower imaging system for the detection of ultrahigh energy neutrinos

Nepomuk Otte, Anthony M. Brown, Abraham D. Falcone, Mosè Mariotti, Ignacio Taboada

Research output: Contribution to journalConference articlepeer-review


Efforts to detect ultrahigh energy neutrinos are driven by several objectives: What is the origin of astrophysical neutrinos detected with IceCube? What are the sources of ultrahigh energy cosmic rays? Do the ANITA detected events point to new physics? Shedding light on these questions requires instruments that can detect neutrinos above 107 GeV with sufficient sensitivity - a daunting task. While most ultrahigh energy neutrino experiments are based on the detection of a radio signature from shower particles following a neutrino interaction, we believe that the detection of Cherenkov and fluorescence light from shower particles is an attractive alternative. Imaging air showers with Cherenkov and fluorescence light is a technique that is successfully used in several ultrahigh energy cosmic ray and very-high energy gamma-ray experiments. We performed a case study of an air-shower imaging system for the detection of earth-skimming tau neutrinos. The detector configuration we consider consists of an imaging system that is located on top of a mountain and is pointed at the horizon. From the results of this study we conclude that a sensitivity of 3 · 10-9 GeV cm-2s-1sr-1 can be achieved at 2 · 108 GeV with a relatively small and modular system after three years of observation. In this presentation we discuss key findings of our study and how they translate into design requirements for an imaging system we dub Trinity.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalProceedings of Science
StatePublished - 2019
Event36th International Cosmic Ray Conference, ICRC 2019 - Madison, United States
Duration: Jul 24 2019Aug 1 2019

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • General


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