Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy

Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy
Department of Physics, Engineering Physics & Astronomy

Departmental Colloquium- Searching for rare events using germanium detectors

Ryan Martin,
University of South Dakota

Thursday April 30, 2015
1:30 p. m. in Theatre A

Abstract:

Neutrinos and dark matter both require physics beyond the Standard Model to be understood. This has led to a rapidly growing interest in experiments that are conducted in deep underground laboratories and in the detection technologies associated with with these, so-called, searches for rare events. In this talk, I will describe how novel implementations of germanium detectors have allowed us to construct the MAJORANA DEMONSTRATOR experiment to search for neutrinoless double-beta decay and dark matter. After giving an overview of the experiment and its current status, I will describe some of the related research activities at our laboratory at the University of South Dakota. I will motivate and describe our efforts to characterize germanium detectors as well as our work to apply the tools of "Big Data'', such as neural networks, to searches for rare events.