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  1. Noble element time projection chambers are a leading technology for rare event detection in physics, such as for dark matter and neutrinoless double beta decay searches. Time projection chambers typically assign event position in the drift direction using the relative timing of prompt scintillation and delayed charge collection signals, allowing for reconstruction of an absolute position in the drift direction. In this paper, alternate methods for assigning event drift distance via quantification of electron diffusion in a pure high pressure xenon gas time projection chamber are explored. Data from the NEXT-White detector demonstrate the ability to achieve good position assignment accuracy for both high- and low-energy events. Using point-like energy deposits from$$^{83\textrm{m}}$$83mKr calibration electron captures ($$E\sim 45$$E45 keV), the position of origin of low-energy events is determined to 2 cm precision with bias$$< 1~$$<1mm. A convolutional neural network approach is then used to quantify diffusion for longer tracks ($$E\ge ~1.5$$E1.5 MeV), from radiogenic electrons, yielding a precision of 3 cm on the event barycenter. The precision achieved with these methods indicates the feasibility energy calibrations of better than 1% FWHM at Q$$_{\beta \beta }$$ββin pure xenon, as well as the potential for event fiducialization in large future detectors using an alternate method that does not rely on primary scintillation.

     
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 1, 2025
  2. Abstract

    We present a tunable metal ion beam that delivers controllable ion currents in the picoamp range for testing of dry-phase ion sensors. Ion beams are formed by sequential atomic evaporation and single or multiple electron impact ionization, followed by acceleration into a sensing region. Controllability of the ionic charge state is achieved through tuning of electrode potentials that influence the retention time in the ionization region. Barium, lead, and cadmium samples have been used to test the system, with ion currents identified and quantified using a quadrupole mass analyzer. Realization of a clean Ba2+  ion beam within a bench-top system represents an important technical advance toward the development and characterization of barium tagging systems for neutrinoless double beta decay searches in xenon gas. This system also provides a testbed for investigation of novel ion sensing methodologies for environmental assay applications, with dication beams of Pb2+and Cd2+also demonstrated for this purpose.

     
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  3. The origin of high-energy cosmic rays, atomic nuclei that continuously impact Earth’s atmosphere, is unknown. Because of deflection by interstellar magnetic fields, cosmic rays produced within the Milky Way arrive at Earth from random directions. However, cosmic rays interact with matter near their sources and during propagation, which produces high-energy neutrinos. We searched for neutrino emission using machine learning techniques applied to 10 years of data from the IceCube Neutrino Observatory. By comparing diffuse emission models to a background-only hypothesis, we identified neutrino emission from the Galactic plane at the 4.5σ level of significance. The signal is consistent with diffuse emission of neutrinos from the Milky Way but could also arise from a population of unresolved point sources.

     
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  4. Abstract

    High-energy tau neutrinos are rarely produced in atmospheric cosmic-ray showers or at cosmic particle accelerators, but are expected to emerge during neutrino propagation over cosmic distances due to flavor mixing. When high energy tau neutrinos interact inside the IceCube detector, two spatially separated energy depositions may be resolved, the first from the charged current interaction and the second from the tau lepton decay. We report a novel analysis of 7.5 years of IceCube data that identifies two candidate tau neutrinos among the 60 “High-Energy Starting Events” (HESE) collected during that period. The HESE sample offers high purity, all-sky sensitivity, and distinct observational signatures for each neutrino flavor, enabling a new measurement of the flavor composition. The measured astrophysical neutrino flavor composition is consistent with expectations, and an astrophysical tau neutrino flux is indicated at 2.8$$\sigma $$σsignificance.

     
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  5. The arrival directions of astrophysical neutrinos indicate point source neutrino emission from NGC 1068. 
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  6. The IceCube Neutrino Observatory opened the window on high-energy neutrino astronomy by confirming the existence of PeV astrophysical neutrinos and identifying the first compelling astrophysical neutrino source in the blazar TXS0506+056. Planning is underway to build an enlarged detector, IceCube-Gen2, which will extend measurements to higher energies, increase the rate of observed cosmic neutrinos and provide improved prospects for detecting fainter sources. IceCube-Gen2 is planned to have an extended in-ice optical array, a radio array at shallower depths for detecting ultra-high-energy (>100 PeV) neutrinos, and a surface component studying cosmic rays. In this contribution, we will discuss the simulation of the in-ice optical component of the baseline design of the IceCube-Gen2 detector, which foresees the deployment of an additional ~120 new detection strings to the existing 86 in IceCube over ~7 Antarctic summer seasons. Motivated by the phased construction plan for IceCube-Gen2, we discuss how the reconstruction capabilities and sensitivities of the instrument are expected to progress throughout its deployment. 
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  7. The IceCube Neutrino Observatory at the South Pole has measured the diffuse astrophysical neutrino flux up to ~PeV energies and is starting to identify first point source candidates. The next generation facility, IceCube-Gen2, aims at extending the accessible energy range to EeV in order to measure the continuation of the astrophysical spectrum, to identify neutrino sources, and to search for a cosmogenic neutrino flux. As part of IceCube-Gen2, a radio array is foreseen that is sensitive to detect Askaryan emission of neutrinos beyond ~30 PeV. Surface and deep antenna stations have different benefits in terms of effective area, resolution, and the capability to reject backgrounds from cosmic-ray air showers and may be combined to reach the best sensitivity. The optimal detector configuration is still to be identified. This contribution presents the full-array simulation efforts for a combination of deep and surface antennas, and compares different design options with respect to their sensitivity to fulfill the science goals of IceCube-Gen2. 
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  8. Abstract Ultraluminous infrared galaxies (ULIRGs) have infrared luminosities L IR ≥ 10 12 L ⊙ , making them the most luminous objects in the infrared sky. These dusty objects are generally powered by starbursts with star formation rates that exceed 100 M ⊙ yr −1 , possibly combined with a contribution from an active galactic nucleus. Such environments make ULIRGs plausible sources of astrophysical high-energy neutrinos, which can be observed by the IceCube Neutrino Observatory at the South Pole. We present a stacking search for high-energy neutrinos from a representative sample of 75 ULIRGs with redshift z ≤ 0.13 using 7.5 yr of IceCube data. The results are consistent with a background-only observation, yielding upper limits on the neutrino flux from these 75 ULIRGs. For an unbroken E −2.5 power-law spectrum, we report an upper limit on the stacked flux Φ ν μ + ν ¯ μ 90 % = 3.24 × 10 − 14 TeV − 1 cm − 2 s − 1 ( E / 10 TeV ) − 2.5 at 90% confidence level. In addition, we constrain the contribution of the ULIRG source population to the observed diffuse astrophysical neutrino flux as well as model predictions. 
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