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Sterile Neutrino Searches with MINOS/MINOS+

L.H. Whitehead, On behalf of the MINOS/MINOS+ collaboration

in 38th International Conference on High Energy Physics

Contribution: pdf


The MINOS and MINOS+ experiment ran from 2005 until 2016 with two detectors at baselines of 1 km and 735 km exposed by the NuMI beam from Fermilab. The NuMI beam neutrino flux peaked at an energy of 3 GeV during the MINOS era in both $\nu_\mu$ and $\overline{\nu}_\mu$ modes. The MINOS+ data were taken entirely in $\nu_\mu$ mode with a peak energy of 7 GeV. A study of three-flavour oscillations with the full MINOS sample and the first two years of data from MINOS+ measured $\Delta m^{2}_{32}=\left(2.42\pm0.09\right)\times10^{-3}\,\textrm{eV}^2$ assuming the Normal Hierarchy, and $\Delta m^{2}_{32}=-\left(2.48^{+0.09}_{-0.11}\right)\times10^{-3}\,\textrm{eV}^2$ in the Inverted Hierarchy. Searches for both sterile neutrinos and sterile antineutrinos were performed with no significant evidence of a signal, hence exclusion limits were placed over six orders of magnitude of the sterile neutrino mass-splitting $\Delta m^{2}_{41}$. A joint analysis of the MINOS $\nu_\mu$ disappearance sample and the Daya Bay and Bugey-3 $\overline{\nu}_e$ disappearance samples excludes the LSND and MiniBooNE allowed regions for $\Delta m^2_{41} < 0.8$ eV$^2$ at 95% C.L.. Finally, an analysis searching for anomalous $\nu_e$ appearance above 6 GeV in MINOS+ was used to set a limit on the allowed sterile neutrino parameter space.