Department of Physics | Apr. 16, 2014 | Notre Dame College of Science
Professor John LoSecco has recently been named a 2014 Fermi Scholar. The goal of the Fermi Scholar Program is to include university based researchers into research and development roles at Fermilab. Professor LoSecco will use the award to work on the design of the lab's next generation neutrino beam.
Neutrinos are very light elementary particles that play a role in astrophysics, nuclear physics, and cosmology. Neutrinos are starting to find applications in arms control and geological exploration.
Professor LoSecco's work will be aimed at optimizing the discovery potential of the future round of neutrino experiments by building enough flexibility into the design of the neutrino beam to be able to adapt the neutrino flux and spectrum to our knowledge of neutrino properties at the time the experiments are ultimately to be run. For example, an outstanding unknown neutrino property is related to the asymmetry between matter and antimatter. Sensitivity to this effect requires a low energy neutrino beam whereas phenomena requiring a large number of neutrino interactions require high energy neutrinos. The goal of the work will be to produce a design that can do both.