Liquid xenon scintillation measurements and pulse shape discrimination in the LUX dark matter detector

D. S. Akerib, S. Alsum, H. M. Araújo, X. Bai, A. J. Bailey, J. Balajthy, P. Beltrame, A. Bernstein, T. P. Biesiadzinski, E. M. Boulton, P. Brás, D. Byram, M. C. Carmona-benitez, A. Currie, J. E. Cutter, T. J. R. Davison, A. Dobi, E. Druszkiewicz, B. N. Edwards, S. R. FallonA. Fan, S. Fiorucci, R. J. Gaitskell, J. Genovesi, C. Ghag, M. G. D. Gilchriese, S. J. Haselschwardt, S. A. Hertel, D. P. Hogan, M. Horn, D. Q. Huang, C. M. Ignarra, R. G. Jacobsen, W. Ji, K. Kamdin, K. Kazkaz, D. Khaitan, R. Knoche, B. G. Lenardo, K. T. Lesko, A. Lindote, M. I. Lopes, A. Manalaysay, R. L. Mannino, M. F. Marzioni, D. N. Mckinsey, D.-m. Mei, J. Mock, M. Moongweluwan, J. A. Morad, A. St. J. Murphy, C. Nehrkorn, H. N. Nelson, F. Neves, K. O’sullivan, K. C. Oliver-mallory, K. J. Palladino, E. K. Pease, C. Rhyne, S. Shaw, T. A. Shutt, C. Silva, M. Solmaz, V. N. Solovov, P. Sorensen, T. J. Sumner, M. Szydagis, B. P. Tennyson, P. A. Terman, D. R. Tiedt, W. H. To, M. Tripathi, L. Tvrznikova, U. Utku, S. Uvarov, V. Velan, J. R. Verbus, R. C. Webb, T. J. Whitis, M. S. Witherell, F. L. H. Wolfs, K. Yazdani

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPs) are a leading candidate for dark matter and are expected to produce nuclear recoil (NR) events within liquid xenon time-projection chambers. We present a measurement of the scintillation timing characteristics of liquid xenon in the LUX dark matter detector and develop a pulse shape discriminant to be used for particle identification. To accurately measure the timing characteristics, we develop a template-fitting method to reconstruct the detection times of photons. Analyzing calibration data collected during the 2013–2016 LUX WIMP search, we provide a new measurement of the singlet-to-triplet scintillation ratio for electron recoils (ER) below 46 keV, and we make, to our knowledge, a first-ever measurement of the NR singlet-to-triplet ratio at recoil energies below 74 keV. We exploit the difference of the photon time spectra for NR and ER events by using a prompt fraction discrimination parameter, which is optimized using calibration data to have the least number of ER events that occur in a 50% NR acceptance region. We then demonstrate how this discriminant can be used in conjunction with the charge-to-light discrimination to possibly improve the signal-to-noise ratio for nuclear recoils.
Original languageEnglish
Article number112002
Number of pages16
JournalPhysical Review D
Volume97
Issue number11
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 11 Jun 2018

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