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  1. Abstract The selection of low-radioactive construction materials is of the utmost importance for rare-event searches and thus critical to the XENONnT experiment. Results of an extensive radioassay program are reported, in which material samples have been screened with gamma-ray spectroscopy, mass spectrometry, and $$^{222}$$ 222 Rn emanation measurements. Furthermore, the cleanliness procedures applied to remove or mitigate surface contamination of detector materials are described. Screening results, used as inputs for a XENONnT Monte Carlo simulation, predict a reduction of materials background ( $$\sim $$ ∼ 17%) with respect to its predecessor XENON1T. Through radon emanation measurements, the expected $$^{222}$$ 222 Rn activity concentration in XENONnT is determined to be 4.2 ( $$^{+0.5}_{-0.7}$$ - 0.7 + 0.5 )  $$\upmu $$ μ Bq/kg, a factor three lower with respect to XENON1T. This radon concentration will be further suppressed by means of the novel radon distillation system. 
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  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available September 1, 2024
  3. Abstract The global network of gravitational-wave observatories now includes five detectors, namely LIGO Hanford, LIGO Livingston, Virgo, KAGRA, and GEO 600. These detectors collected data during their third observing run, O3, composed of three phases: O3a starting in 2019 April and lasting six months, O3b starting in 2019 November and lasting five months, and O3GK starting in 2020 April and lasting two weeks. In this paper we describe these data and various other science products that can be freely accessed through the Gravitational Wave Open Science Center at . The main data set, consisting of the gravitational-wave strain time series that contains the astrophysical signals, is released together with supporting data useful for their analysis and documentation, tutorials, as well as analysis software packages. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 28, 2024
  4. Free, publicly-accessible full text available August 1, 2024
  5. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2024
  6. Free, publicly-accessible full text available July 1, 2024
  7. Abstract We use 47 gravitational wave sources from the Third LIGO–Virgo–Kamioka Gravitational Wave Detector Gravitational Wave Transient Catalog (GWTC–3) to estimate the Hubble parameter H ( z ), including its current value, the Hubble constant H 0 . Each gravitational wave (GW) signal provides the luminosity distance to the source, and we estimate the corresponding redshift using two methods: the redshifted masses and a galaxy catalog. Using the binary black hole (BBH) redshifted masses, we simultaneously infer the source mass distribution and H ( z ). The source mass distribution displays a peak around 34 M ⊙ , followed by a drop-off. Assuming this mass scale does not evolve with the redshift results in a H ( z ) measurement, yielding H 0 = 68 − 8 + 12 km s − 1 Mpc − 1 (68% credible interval) when combined with the H 0 measurement from GW170817 and its electromagnetic counterpart. This represents an improvement of 17% with respect to the H 0 estimate from GWTC–1. The second method associates each GW event with its probable host galaxy in the catalog GLADE+ , statistically marginalizing over the redshifts of each event’s potential hosts. Assuming a fixed BBH population, we estimate a value of H 0 = 68 − 6 + 8 km s − 1 Mpc − 1 with the galaxy catalog method, an improvement of 42% with respect to our GWTC–1 result and 20% with respect to recent H 0 studies using GWTC–2 events. However, we show that this result is strongly impacted by assumptions about the BBH source mass distribution; the only event which is not strongly impacted by such assumptions (and is thus informative about H 0 ) is the well-localized event GW190814. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2024
  8. Abstract We present the results of a model-based search for continuous gravitational waves from the low-mass X-ray binary Scorpius X-1 using LIGO detector data from the third observing run of Advanced LIGO and Advanced Virgo. This is a semicoherent search that uses details of the signal model to coherently combine data separated by less than a specified coherence time, which can be adjusted to balance sensitivity with computing cost. The search covered a range of gravitational-wave frequencies from 25 to 1600 Hz, as well as ranges in orbital speed, frequency, and phase determined from observational constraints. No significant detection candidates were found, and upper limits were set as a function of frequency. The most stringent limits, between 100 and 200 Hz, correspond to an amplitude h 0 of about 10 −25 when marginalized isotropically over the unknown inclination angle of the neutron star’s rotation axis, or less than 4 × 10 −26 assuming the optimal orientation. The sensitivity of this search is now probing amplitudes predicted by models of torque balance equilibrium. For the usual conservative model assuming accretion at the surface of the neutron star, our isotropically marginalized upper limits are close to the predicted amplitude from about 70 to 100 Hz; the limits assuming that the neutron star spin is aligned with the most likely orbital angular momentum are below the conservative torque balance predictions from 40 to 200 Hz. Assuming a broader range of accretion models, our direct limits on gravitational-wave amplitude delve into the relevant parameter space over a wide range of frequencies, to 500 Hz or more. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023
  9. Abstract In particle collider experiments, elementary particle interactions with large momentum transfer produce quarks and gluons (known as partons) whose evolution is governed by the strong force, as described by the theory of quantum chromodynamics (QCD) 1 . These partons subsequently emit further partons in a process that can be described as a parton shower 2 , which culminates in the formation of detectable hadrons. Studying the pattern of the parton shower is one of the key experimental tools for testing QCD. This pattern is expected to depend on the mass of the initiating parton, through a phenomenon known as the dead-cone effect, which predicts a suppression of the gluon spectrum emitted by a heavy quark of mass m Q and energy E , within a cone of angular size m Q / E around the emitter 3 . Previously, a direct observation of the dead-cone effect in QCD had not been possible, owing to the challenge of reconstructing the cascading quarks and gluons from the experimentally accessible hadrons. We report the direct observation of the QCD dead cone by using new iterative declustering techniques 4,5 to reconstruct the parton shower of charm quarks. This result confirms a fundamental feature of QCD. Furthermore, the measurement of a dead-cone angle constitutes a direct experimental observation of the non-zero mass of the charm quark, which is a fundamental constant in the standard model of particle physics. 
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