P. Benetti

University of Pavia, Ticinum, Lombardy, Italy

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Publications (123)

  • Source
    J. W. Beeman · F. Bellini · P. Benetti · [...] · M. Vignati
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In the view of exploring the inverted hierarchy region future experiments investigating the neutrinoless double beta decay have to demand for detectors with excellent energy resolution and zero background in the energy region of interest. Cryogenic scintillating bolometers are very suitable detectors for this task since they provide particle discrimination: the simultaneous detection of the phonon and light signal allows us to identify the interacting type of particle and thus guarantees a suppression of (Formula presented.)-induced backgrounds, the key-issue for next-generation tonne-scale bolometric experiments. The LUCIFER project aims at running the first array of enriched scintillating Zn(Formula presented.)Se bolometers (total mass of about 8kg of (Formula presented.)Se) with a background level as low as 10(Formula presented.) counts/(keV kg y) in the energy region of interest. The main effort is currently focused on the finalization of the crystal growth procedure in order to achieve high quality Zn(Formula presented.)Se crystals both in terms of radiopurity and bolometric properties. We present results from tests of such crystals operated at mK temperatures which demonstrate the excellent background rejection capabilities of this detection approach towards a background-free demonstrator experiment. Besides, the high purity of the enriched (Formula presented.)Se material allows us to establish the most stringent limits on the half-life of the double beta decay of (Formula presented.)Se on excited levels.
    Full-text Article · Jan 2016 · Journal of Low Temperature Physics
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    J. W. Beeman · F. Bellini · P. Benetti · [...] · M. Vignati
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The LUCIFER project aims at deploying the first array of enriched scintillating bolometers for the investigation of neutrinoless double-beta decay of (Formula presented.). The matrix which embeds the source is an array of ZnSe crystals, where enriched (Formula presented.) is used as decay isotope. The radiopurity of the initial components employed for manufacturing crystals, that can be operated as bolometers, is crucial for achieving a null background level in the region of interest for double-beta decay investigations. In this work, we evaluated the radioactive content in 2.5 kg of 96.3 % enriched (Formula presented.) metal, measured with a high-purity germanium detector at the Gran Sasso deep underground laboratory. The limits on internal contaminations of primordial decay chain elements of (Formula presented.) are respectively: (Formula presented.) at 90 % C.L. The extremely low-background conditions in which the measurement was carried out and the high radiopurity of the (Formula presented.) allowed us to establish the most stringent lower limits on the half-lives of the double-beta decay of (Formula presented.) excited states of (Formula presented.) y, respectively, with a 90 % C.L.
    Full-text Article · Dec 2015 · European Physical Journal C
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    J. W. Beeman · F. Bellini · P. Benetti · [...] · M. Vignati
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The LUCIFER project aims at deploying the first array of enriched scintillating bolometers for the investigation of neutrinoless double-beta decay of $^{82}$Se. The matrix which embeds the source is an array of ZnSe crystals, where enriched $^{82}$Se is used as decay isotope. The radiopurity of the initial components employed for manufacturing crystals, that can be operated as bolometers, is crucial for achieving a null background level in the region of interest for double-beta decay investigations. In this work, we evaluated the radioactive content in 2.5 kg of 96.3% enriched $^{82}$Se metal, measured with a high-purity germanium detector at the Gran Sasso deep underground laboratory. The limits on internal contaminations of primordial decay chain elements of $^{232}$Th, $^{238}$U and $^{235}$U are respectively: $<$61 $\mu$Bq/kg, $<$110 $\mu$Bq/kg and $<$74 $\mu$Bq/kg at 90% C.L.. The extremely low-background conditions in which the measurement was carried out and the high radiopurity of the $^{82}$Se allowed us to establish the most stringent lower limits on the half-lives of the double-beta decay of $^{82}$Se to 0$^+_1$, 2$^+_2$ and 2$^+_1$ excited states of $^{82}$Kr of 3.4$\cdot$10$^{22}$ y, 1.3$\cdot$10$^{22}$ y and 1.0$\cdot$10$^{22}$ y, respectively, with a 90% C.L..
    Full-text Article · Aug 2015
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    R. Acciarri · C. Adams · R. An · [...] · C. Zhang
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A Short-Baseline Neutrino (SBN) physics program of three LAr-TPC detectors located along the Booster Neutrino Beam (BNB) at Fermilab is presented. This new SBN Program will deliver a rich and compelling physics opportunity, including the ability to resolve a class of experimental anomalies in neutrino physics and to perform the most sensitive search to date for sterile neutrinos at the eV mass-scale through both appearance and disappearance oscillation channels. Using data sets of 6.6e20 protons on target (P.O.T.) in the LAr1-ND and ICARUS T600 detectors plus 13.2e20 P.O.T. in the MicroBooNE detector, we estimate that a search for muon neutrino to electron neutrino appearance can be performed with ~5 sigma sensitivity for the LSND allowed (99% C.L.) parameter region. In this proposal for the SBN Program, we describe the physics analysis, the conceptual design of the LAr1-ND detector, the design and refurbishment of the T600 detector, the necessary infrastructure required to execute the program, and a possible reconfiguration of the BNB target and horn system to improve its performance for oscillation searches.
    Full-text Article · Mar 2015
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    M. Antonello · B. Baibussinov · P. Benetti · [...] · K. Zaremba
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A sensitive search for anomalous LSND-like nu_mu to nu_e oscillations has been performed by the ICARUS Collaboration exposing the T600 LAr-TPC to the CERN to Gran Sasso (CNGS) neutrino beam. The result is compatible with the absence of additional anomalous contributions giving a limit to oscillation probability of 3.4E-3 and 7.6E-3 at 90% and 99% confidence levels respectively showing a tension between these new limits and the low-energy event excess (200 < E_nu QE < 475 MeV) reported by MiniBooNE Collaboration. A more detailed comparison of the ICARUS data with the MiniBooNE low-energy excess has been performed, including the energy resolution as obtained from the official MiniBooNE data release. As a result the previously reported tension is confirmed at 90% C.L., suggesting an unexplained nature or an otherwise instrumental effect for the MiniBooNE low energy event excess
    Full-text Article · Feb 2015
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    M. Antonello · B. Baibussinov · P. Benetti · [...] · K. Zaremba
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The ICARUS T600 detector, the largest liquid Argon Time Projection Chamber (LAr-TPC) realized after many years of RD activities, was installed and successfully operated for 3 years at the INFN Gran Sasso underground Laboratory. One of the most important issues was the need of an extremely low residual electronegative impurity content in the liquid Argon, in order to transport the free electrons created by the ionizing particles with a very small attenuation along the drift path. The solutions adopted for the Argon re-circulation and purification systems have permitted to reach impressive results in terms of Argon purity and a free electron lifetime exceeding 15 ms, corresponding to about 20 parts per trillion of equivalent O2 contamination, a milestone for any future project involving LAr-TPC's and the development of higher detector mass scales.
    Full-text Article · Sep 2014 · Journal of Instrumentation
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    M. Antonello · B. Baibussinov · P. Benetti · [...] · K. Zaremba
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The ICARUS T600 detector, with its 470 tons of active mass, is the largest liquid Argon TPC ever built. Operated for three years in the LNGS underground laboratory, it has collected thousands of CNGS neutrino beam interactions and cosmic ray events with energy spanning from tens of MeV to tens of GeV, with a trigger system based on scintillation light, charge signal on TPC wires and time information (for beam related events only). The performance of trigger system in terms of efficiency, background and live-time as a function of the event energy for the CNGS data taking is presented.
    Full-text Article · May 2014 · Journal of Instrumentation
  • J.W. Beeman · F. bellini · P. Benetti · [...] · M. Vignati
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In the field of fundamental particle physics, the neutrino has become more and more important in the last few years, since the discovery of its mass. In particular, the ultimate nature of the neutrino (if it is a Dirac or a Majorana particle) plays a crucial role not only in neutrino physics, but also in the overall framework of fundamental particle interactions and in cosmology. The only way to disentangle its ultimate nature is to search for the neutrinoless double beta decay. The idea of LUCIFER is to combine the bolometric technique proposed for the CUORE experiment with the bolometric light detection technique used in cryogenic dark matter experiments. The bolometric technique allows an extremely good energy resolution while its combination with the scintillation detection offers an ultimate tool for background rejection. The goal of LUCIFER is not only to build a background-free small-scale experiment but also to directly prove the potentiality of this technique. Preliminary tests on several detectors containing different interesting DBD emitters have clearly demonstrated the excellent background rejection capabilities that arise from the simultaneous, independent, double readout of heat and scintillation light.
    Article · Sep 2013 · Advances in High Energy Physics
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    M. Antonello · B. Baibussinov · P. Benetti · [...] · K. Zaremba
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report an updated result from the ICARUS experiment on the search for ν μ →ν e anomalies with the CNGS beam, produced at CERN with an average energy of 20 GeV and traveling 730 km to the Gran Sasso Laboratory. The present analysis is based on a total sample of 1995 events of CNGS neutrino interactions, which corresponds to an almost doubled sample with respect to the previously published result. Four clear ν e events have been visually identified over the full sample, compared with an expectation of 6.4±0.9 events from conventional sources. The result is compatible with the absence of additional anomalous contributions. At 90 % and 99 % confidence levels, the limits to possible oscillated events are 3.7 and 8.3 respectively. The corresponding limit to oscillation probability becomes consequently 3.4×10−3 and 7.6×10−3, respectively. The present result confirms, with an improved sensitivity, the early result already published by the ICARUS Collaboration.
    Full-text Article · Jul 2013 · European Physical Journal C
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    M. Antonello · B. Baibussinov · P. Benetti · [...] · K. Zaremba
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Liquid Argon Time Projection Chamber (LAr TPC) detectors offer charged particle imaging capability with remarkable spatial resolution. Precise event reconstruction procedures are critical in order to fully exploit the potential of this technology. In this paper we present a new, general approach of three-dimensional reconstruction for the LAr TPC with a practical application to track reconstruction. The efficiency of the method is evaluated on a sample of simulated tracks. We present also the application of the method to the analysis of real data tracks collected during the ICARUS T600 detector operation with the CNGS neutrino beam.
    Full-text Article · Mar 2013 · Advances in High Energy Physics
  • Source
    M. Antonello · B. Baibussinov · P. Benetti · [...] · K. Zaremba
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We report an early result from the ICARUS experiment on the search for a ν μ →ν e signal due to the LSND anomaly. The search was performed with the ICARUS T600 detector located at the Gran Sasso Laboratory, receiving CNGS neutrinos from CERN at an average energy of about 20 GeV, after a flight path of ∼730 km. The LSND anomaly would manifest as an excess of ν e events, characterized by a fast energy oscillation averaging approximately to \(\sin^{2}(1.27\Delta m^{2}_{\mathrm{new}}L/E_{\nu})\approx 1/2\) with probability \(P_{\nu_{\mu}\rightarrow \nu_{e}} = 1/2 \sin^{2}(2\theta_{\mathrm{new}})\). The present analysis is based on 1091 neutrino events, which are about 50 % of the ICARUS data collected in 2010–2011. Two clear ν e events have been found, compared with the expectation of 3.7±0.6 events from conventional sources. Within the range of our observations, this result is compatible with the absence of a LSND anomaly. At 90 % and 99 % confidence levels the limits of 3.4 and 7.3 events corresponding to oscillation probabilities \(\langle P_{\nu_{\mu}\rightarrow \nu_{e}}\rangle \le 5.4 \times 10^{-3}\) and \(\langle P_{\nu_{\mu}\rightarrow \nu_{e}}\rangle \le 1.1 \times 10^{-2} \) are set respectively. The result strongly limits the window of open options for the LSND anomaly to a narrow region around (Δm 2,sin2(2θ))new=(0.5 eV2,0.005), where there is an overall agreement (90 % CL) between the present ICARUS limit, the published limits of KARMEN and the published positive signals of LSND and MiniBooNE Collaborations.
    Full-text Article · Mar 2013 · European Physical Journal C
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: During May 2012, the CERN-CNGS neutrino beam has been operated for two weeks for a total of ~1.8 × 1017 p.o.t., with the proton beam made of bunches, few ns wide and separated by 100 ns. This beam structure allows a very accurate time of flight measurement of neutrinos from CERN to LNGS on an event-by-event basis. Both the ICARUS-T600 PMT-DAQ and the CERN-LNGS timing synchronization have been substantially improved for this campaign, taking advantage of additional independent GPS receivers, both at CERN and LNGS as well as of the deployment of the “White Rabbit” protocol both at CERN and LNGS. The ICARUS-T600 detector has collected 25 beam-associated events; the corresponding time of flight has been accurately evaluated, using all different time synchronization paths. The measured neutrino time of flight is compatible with the arrival of all events with speed equivalent to the one of light: the difference between the expected value based on the speed of light and the measured value is δt = tof c −tof ν = 0.10 ± 0.67stat. ± 2.39syst. ns. This result is in agreement with the value previously reported by the ICARUS Collaboration, δt = 0.3 ± 4.9stat. ± 9.0syst. ns, but with improved statistical and systematic accuracy.
    Full-text Article · Aug 2012 · Journal of High Energy Physics
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The CERN-SPS accelerator has been briefly operated in a new, lower intensity neutrino mode with ~10^12 p.o.t. /pulse and with a beam structure made of four LHC-like extractions, each with a narrow width of 3 ns, separated by 524 ns. This very tightly bunched beam structure represents a substantial progress with respect to the ordinary operation of the CNGS beam, since it allows a very accurate time-of-flight measurement of neutrinos from CERN to LNGS on an event-to-event basis. The ICARUS T600 detector has collected 7 beam-associated events, consistent with the CNGS delivered neutrino flux of 2.2 10^16 p.o.t. and in agreement with the well known characteristics of neutrino events in the LAr-TPC. The time of flight difference between the speed of light and the arriving neutrino LAr-TPC events has been analysed. The result is compatible with the simultaneous arrival of all events with equal speed, the one of light. This is in a striking difference with the reported result of OPERA that claimed that high energy neutrinos from CERN should arrive at LNGS about 60 ns earlier than expected from luminal speed.
    Full-text Article · Mar 2012 · Physics Letters B
  • P. Benetti · R. Acciarri · M. Belluco · [...] · C. Vignoli
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A method to measure the low energy nuclear recoils induced by weakly interactive massive particles (WIMPs) has been achieved by means of an ultra pure Liquid Argon detector. The simultaneous observation of scintillation and ionization occurring in the liquid Argon allow to obtain a very high rejection power against background sources. The first preliminary upper bounds on WIMP parameters obtained with a small 2.3 liter test chamber with an accumulated fiducial exposure of about 100 kg⋅day at the Gran Sasso Underground Laboratory is reported. This supports the validity of this method for a larger detector presently under construction with correspondingly increased sensitivities.
    Article · Dec 2011 · Nuclear Physics B - Proceedings Supplements
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The OPERA collaboration has claimed evidence of superluminal {\nu}{_\mu} propagation between CERN and the LNGS. Cohen and Glashow argued that such neutrinos should lose energy by producing photons and e+e- pairs, through Z0 mediated processes analogous to Cherenkov radiation. In terms of the parameter delta=(v^2_nu-v^2_c)/v^2_c, the OPERA result implies delta = 5 x 10^-5. For this value of \delta a very significant deformation of the neutrino energy spectrum and an abundant production of photons and e+e- pairs should be observed at LNGS. We present an analysis based on the 2010 and part of the 2011 data sets from the ICARUS experiment, located at Gran Sasso National Laboratory and using the same neutrino beam from CERN. We find that the rates and deposited energy distributions of neutrino events in ICARUS agree with the expectations for an unperturbed spectrum of the CERN neutrino beam. Our results therefore refute a superluminal interpretation of the OPERA result according to the Cohen and Glashow prediction for a weak current analog to Cherenkov radiation. In particular no superluminal Cherenkov like e+e- pair or gamma emission event has been directly observed inside the fiducial volume of the "bubble chamber like" ICARUS TPC-LAr detector, setting the much stricter limit of delta < 2.5 10^-8 at the 90% confidence level, comparable with the one due to the observations from the SN1987A.
    Full-text Article · Oct 2011 · Physics Letters B
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cryogenic noble liquid detectors are presently considered one of the best options for WIMP Dark Matter searches, especially when extensions to multi ton scale sensitive masses are foreseen. The WArP experiment is the first one that exploits the unique characteristics of liquid Argon to make a highly sensitive search for WIMP Dark Matter candidates. In 2008, a double phase detector has been assembled in the Gran Sasso National Laboratory with 140 kg sensitive mass and a discovery potential in the range of 5 × 10−45 cm2 in the spin-independent WIMP-nucleon cross-section. In addition to standard neutrons and gamma-rays passive shields, WArP implements an 8 ton liquid Argon active shield with 4π coverage. The detector was commissioned and put into operation during the first half of 2009 for a first technical run. This first run lasted about three months and then it was stopped for some detector repairs and modifications in the summer of 2009. A second run was started at the beginning of 2010. Detector design, construction and assembly are described, together with the results of the technical run and the very first results of the 2010 run.
    Article · Jul 2011 · Journal of Physics Conference Series
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Open questions are still present in fundamental Physics and Cosmology, like the nature of Dark Matter, the matter-antimatter asymmetry and the validity of the particle interaction Standard Model. Addressing these questions requires a new generation of massive particle detectors exploring the subatomic and astrophysical worlds. ICARUS T600 is the first large mass (760 ton) example of a novel detector generation able to combine the imaging capabilities of the old famous "bubble chamber" with an excellent energy measurement in huge electronic detectors. ICARUS T600 now operates at the Gran Sasso underground laboratory, studying cosmic rays, neutrino oscillation and proton decay. Physical potentialities of this novel telescope are presented through few examples of neutrino interactions reconstructed with unprecedented details. Detector design and early operation are also reported.
    Full-text Article · Jun 2011 · Journal of Instrumentation
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A dedicated test of the effects of Oxygen contamination in liquid Argon has been performed at the INFN-Gran Sasso Laboratory (LNGS, Italy) within the WArP R&D program. Two detectors have been used: the WArP2.3 lt prototype and a small (0.7 lt) dedicated detector, coupled with a system for the injection of controlled amounts of gaseous Oxygen. O2 contamination in LAr leads to depletion of both the free electron charge (via attachment process) and the scintillation light (via quenching and absorption mechanisms) available for ionization signal detection. Purpose of the test with the 0.7 lt detector was to detect the reduction of the long-lived component lifetime of the Argon scintillation light emission and of the overall light yield at increasing O2 concentration. Data from the WArP prototype were used for determining the behavior of both the ionization electron lifetime and the scintillation long-lived component lifetime at decreasing O2 concentration by the purification process activated in closed loop during the acquisition run. The electron lifetime measurements allowed to infer the O2 content of the Argon and correlate it with the long-lived scintillation lifetime data. The effects of Oxygen contamination on the scintillation light have been thus extensively measured over a wide range of O2 concentration, spanning from ~ 10−3 ppm up to ~ 10 ppm.
    Full-text Article · May 2010 · Journal of Instrumentation
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    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Cryogenic noble liquid detectors are presently considered one of the best options for WIMP Dark Matter searches, especially when extensions to multi ton scale sensitive masses are foreseen. The WArP experiment is the first one that exploits the unique characteristics of liquid Argon to make a highly sensitive search for WIMP Dark Matter candidates. In 2008, a double phase detector has been assembled in the Gran Sasso National Laboratory with 140 kg sensitive mass and a discovery potential in the range of 5 × 10-45 cm2 in the spin-independent WIMP-nucleon cross-section. In addition to standard neutrons and gamma-rays passive shields, WArP implements an 8 ton liquid Argon active shield with 4p coverage. The detector was commissioned and put into operation during the first half of 2009 for a first technical run. Detector design, construction and assembly are described, together with the very first results of this technical run.
    Full-text Article · Feb 2010 · Journal of Physics Conference Series
  • [Show abstract] [Hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We discuss the ICARUS T600 detector capabilities in electromagnetic shower reconstruction through the analysis of a sample of 212 events, coming from the 2001 Pavia surface test run, of hadronic interactions leading to the production of π0 mesons. Methods of shower energy and shower direction measurements were developed and the invariant mass of the photon pairs was reconstructed. The (γγ) invariant mass was found to be consistent with the value of the π0 mass. The resolution of the reconstructed π0 mass was found to be equal to 27.3%. An improved analysis, carried out in order to clean the full event sample from the events measured in the crowded environment, mostly due to the trigger conditions, gave a π0 mass resolution of 16.1%, significantly better than the one evaluated for the full event sample. The trigger requirement of the coincidence of at least four photo-multiplier signals favored the selection of events with a strong pile up of cosmic ray tracks and interactions. Hence a number of candidate π0 events were heavily contaminated by other tracks and had to be rejected. Monte Carlo simulations of events with π0 production in hadronic and neutrino interactions confirmed the validity of the shower energy and shower direction reconstruction methods applied to the real data.
    Article · Jan 2010 · Acta Physica Polonica Series B

Publication Stats

2k Citations

Institutions

  • 1982-2015
    • University of Pavia
      • Department of Physics
      Ticinum, Lombardy, Italy
  • 2003-2011
    • INFN - Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare
      Frascati, Latium, Italy
    • Politecnico di Milano
      Milano, Lombardy, Italy
    • Università degli Studi di Palermo
      Palermo, Sicily, Italy
  • 2008
    • Princeton University
      Princeton, New Jersey, United States
  • 2006
    • University of Naples Federico II
      • Department of Physical Sciences
      Portici, Campania, Italy
  • 2004
    • Mascara Universit
      Algeria
  • 2000-2004
    • University of Milan
      • Department of Physics
      Milano, Lombardy, Italy
  • 1998
    • University of Southampton
      Southampton, England, United Kingdom
  • 1993
    • University of Padova
      Padua, Veneto, Italy