A search for bursts at 0.1 PeV with a small air shower array.
July 08, 2021
The Cosmic Ray Extremely Distributed Observatory (CREDO) pursues a global research strategy dedicated to the search for correlated cosmic rays, so-called Cosmic Ray Ensembles (CRE). Its general approach to CRE detection does not involve any a priori considerations and the search strategy encompasses both spatial and temporal correlations, on different scales. Here we search for time clustering of the cosmic ray events collected with a small sea-level air shower array at the University of Adelaide. The array consists of seven one square metre scintillators enclosing an area of 10 m x 19 m. It has a threshold energy ~0.1 PeV, and records cosmic ray showers at a rate of ~6 mHz. We have examined event times over a period of almost two years (~294k events) to determine the event time spacing distributions between individual events and the distributions of time periods which contained specific numbers of multiple events. We find that the overall time distributions are as expected for random events. The distribution which was chosen a priori for particular study was for time periods covering five events (four spacings). Overall, this fits closely with expectation but has two outliers of short ‘burst’ periods. One of these outliers contains eight events within 48 seconds. The physical characteristics of the array will be discussed together with the analysis procedure, including a fit between the observed time distributions and expectation based on randomly arriving events.
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