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Volume 358 - 36th International Cosmic Ray Conference (ICRC2019) - NU - Neutrino
First Double Cascade Tau Neutrino Candidates in IceCube and a New Measurement of the Flavor Composition
J. Stachurska
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Pre-published on: 2019 July 22
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The IceCube Neutrino Observatory at the South Pole, which detects Cherenkov light from charged particles produced in neutrino interactions, firmly established the existence of an astrophysical high-energy neutrino component. The expected neutrino flavor composition on Earth is $\nu_e:\nu_{\mu}:\nu_{\tau}$ of about 1:1:1 for neutrinos produced in astrophysical sources through pion decay. A measurement of the flavor composition on Earth can provide important constraints on sources and production mechanisms within the standard model, and can also constrain various beyond-standard-model processes. Here the measurement of the flavor composition performed on IceCube's High-Energy Starting Events sample with a livetime of about 7.5 years is presented. IceCube is directly sensitive to each neutrino flavor via the single cascade, track and double cascade event topologies. In IceCube, $\nu_{\tau}$-CC interactions above $\sim$ 100~TeV can produce resolvable double cascades, breaking the degeneracy between $\nu_e$ and $\nu_{\tau}$ present at lower energies. IceCube's first two identified double cascades are presented and the properties of the two $\nu_{\tau}$ candidates are discussed.
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