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Neutrino induced events in the MINOS detectors

Description: The MINOS experiment is designed to study neutrino oscillations. It uses an accelerator generated beam of neutrinos and two detectors, the smaller at a distance of 1km and the larger at 735 km. By comparing the spectrum and flavour composition of the beam at the two detectors precise determinations of the oscillation parameters are possible. This thesis concentrates on the analysis of data from the larger Far Detector. By studying the spectrum of neutral current events it is possible to look for evidence of non-interacting 'sterile' neutrinos. The thesis describes how events are selected for this analysis, and a method for discriminating between charged current and neutral current events. The systematic uncertainties resulting from these cuts are evaluated. Several techniques for using Near Detector data to eliminate systematic uncertainties in the predicted Far Detector spectrum are compared. An oscillation analysis, based on the first year of MINOS data, uses the selected events to make a measurement of f{sub s}, the fraction of unseen neutrinos that are sterile. The measured value is f{sub s} = 0.07{sup +0.32} at 68%C.L., and is consistent with the standard three-neutrino picture, which has no sterile neutrino.
Date: March 1, 2008
Creator: Litchfield, Reuben Phillip
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department