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Using scientific-grade CCDs for the direct detection of dark matter with the DAMIC-M experiment


Papadopoulos, Georgios; Kilminster, Ben; Robmann, Peter; Lee, Steven (2022). Using scientific-grade CCDs for the direct detection of dark matter with the DAMIC-M experiment. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment, 1040:167184.

Abstract

The DAMIC-M (Dark matter in CCDs at Modane) experiment, successor of DAMIC at SNOLAB (Sudbury Neutrino Observatory laboratory), is devoted to the search for dark matter (DM) candidates interacting with the electrons or the nuclei of the bulk silicon of fully depleted Charge-Coupled Devices (CCDs). A kilogram-sized target mass will be installed at the Modane underground laboratory which offers an excellent low background environment for rare-event searches. The implementation of the Skipper readout allows for multiple non-destructive pixel charge measurements, reaching a readout noise of a fraction of an electron. This perfect performance in terms of charge resolution can be limited by the radioactive background and the noise introduced by the external electronics. Much effort is put into the protection of the silicon from contamination by cosmic ray spallation, careful choice of the materials to support and shield the CCDs, and development of a new acquisition system with fast and sensitive electronics for the control and readout of a CCD. All these advancements will push the detection threshold down to a few eVs, improving the sensitivity of DAMIC-M by at least one order of magnitude with respect to previous experiments. I will present the current status of DAMIC-M describing our technological challenges and the solutions we have adopted, and introduce the ongoing assembly of a prototype detector, the Low Background Chamber, aiming at validating our final design options and produce the first scientific results.

Abstract

The DAMIC-M (Dark matter in CCDs at Modane) experiment, successor of DAMIC at SNOLAB (Sudbury Neutrino Observatory laboratory), is devoted to the search for dark matter (DM) candidates interacting with the electrons or the nuclei of the bulk silicon of fully depleted Charge-Coupled Devices (CCDs). A kilogram-sized target mass will be installed at the Modane underground laboratory which offers an excellent low background environment for rare-event searches. The implementation of the Skipper readout allows for multiple non-destructive pixel charge measurements, reaching a readout noise of a fraction of an electron. This perfect performance in terms of charge resolution can be limited by the radioactive background and the noise introduced by the external electronics. Much effort is put into the protection of the silicon from contamination by cosmic ray spallation, careful choice of the materials to support and shield the CCDs, and development of a new acquisition system with fast and sensitive electronics for the control and readout of a CCD. All these advancements will push the detection threshold down to a few eVs, improving the sensitivity of DAMIC-M by at least one order of magnitude with respect to previous experiments. I will present the current status of DAMIC-M describing our technological challenges and the solutions we have adopted, and introduce the ongoing assembly of a prototype detector, the Low Background Chamber, aiming at validating our final design options and produce the first scientific results.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:07 Faculty of Science > Physics Institute
Dewey Decimal Classification:530 Physics
Scopus Subject Areas:Physical Sciences > Nuclear and High Energy Physics
Physical Sciences > Instrumentation
Uncontrolled Keywords:Instrumentation, Nuclear and High Energy Physics
Language:English
Date:1 October 2022
Deposited On:04 Jan 2023 08:01
Last Modified:28 Jun 2024 01:37
Publisher:Elsevier
ISSN:0168-9002
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nima.2022.167184
Project Information:
  • : FunderH2020
  • : Grant ID788137
  • : Project TitleDAMIC-M - Unveiling the Hidden: A Search for Light Dark Matter with CCDs
  • : FunderHorizon 2020 Framework Programme
  • : Grant ID
  • : Project Title
  • : FunderEuropean Research Council
  • : Grant ID
  • : Project Title