University of Minnesota
School of Physics & Astronomy

Physics and Astronomy Calendar

Friday, August 21st 2015
2:00 pm:
Thesis Defense in 110 PAN
Speaker: Kanika Sachdev, University of Minnesota
Subject: Muon to Electron Neutrino Oscillation in NOvA

NOvA is a long-baseline neutrino oscillation experiment optimized for electron neutrino appearance in the NuMI beam, a muon neutrino source at Fermilab. It consists of two functionally identical, nearly fully-active liquid-scintillator tracking calorimeters. The near detector (ND) at Fermilab is used to study the neutrino beam spectrum and composition before oscillation, and measure background rate to the electron neutrino appearance search. The far detector, 810 km away in Northern Minnesota, observes the oscillated beam and is used to extract oscillation parameters from the data. NOvA's long baseline, combined with the ability of the NuMI beam to operate in the anti-neutrino mode, makes NOvA sensitive to the last unmeasured parameters in neutrino oscillations- mass hierarchy, CP violation and the octant of mixing angle theta23. This thesis presents the search for electron neutrino appearance in the first data collected by the NOvA detectors from February 2014 till May 2015. Studies of the NuMI neutrino data collected in the NOvA near detector and its effect on the oscillation measurement in the far detector are also presented.

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