Measurement of the multi-TeV neutrino cross section with IceCube using Earth absorption
July 22, 2019
IceCube detects neutrinos at energies orders of magnitude higher than any neutrinos produced at particle accelerators. Neutrinos are weakly interacting particles but at energies above 30 TeV the Earth becomes opaque to neutrinos. The neutrino cross section is well predicted in the Standard Model. Any unexpected increase in the cross-section could be a sign of beyond the standard model physics.
In this analysis IceCube's through-going muon neutrino flux is used to fit for the cross section of neutrino interaction, the through-going high energy neutrinos will be absorbed as they travel through the Earth and a maximum likelihood fit allows for the cross section to be determined as a multiple of the Standard Model prediction. We will review the measurement of the neutrino cross section using 1 year of IceCube data, containing 10,000 events, which was found to be consistent with Standard Model predictions. In this contribution, we present plans for an extension to this analysis using 8 years of IceCube data, approximately 300,000 events. In the extension the cross section will be measure per neutrino energy for both charged and neutral current interactions. This will be the most accurate high-energy muon neutrino cross section measurement available, while also being sensitive to any beyond the Standard Model components.
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