Gadolinium offers new research opportunities for Super-Kamiokande

Today in Japan, a collaboration of scientists on the Super – Kamiokande (SK) experiment announced the completion of the modernization of the huge neutrino detector. This modernization opens up completely new research opportunities. Physicists – including those from Poland – will be able to investigate, e. g. neutrino signals from supernova explosions in the distant past.

New research opportunities were gained by adding gadolinium compounds to a detector tank containing 50 million liters of crystal clear water. Gadolinium will allow the observation of neutrons formed by the interaction of high-energy antineutrinos with water. As a result, it will be possible to record antineutrinos formed in supernova explosions at the beginning of the history of the universe.

Polish scientists from the National Centre for Nuclear Research participated in the modernization of the SK detector, and now they will also analyze data of the experiment aimed at searching for a possible signal from dark matter particles.

The research of Polish scientists is supported by grants from the National Science Center: SONATA-BIS.

2015/18/E/ST2/00758 and 2018/30/E/ST2/00441

http: //www-sk. icrr. u-tokyo. ac. jp/sk/news/2020/08/sk-gd-detail-e. html