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  1. Abstract

    The direct search for dark matter in the form of weakly interacting massive particles (WIMP) is performed by detecting nuclear recoils produced in a target material from the WIMP elastic scattering. The experimental identification of the direction of the WIMP-induced nuclear recoils is a crucial asset in this field, as it enables unmistakable modulation signatures for dark matter. The Recoil Directionality (ReD) experiment was designed to probe for such directional sensitivity in argon dual-phase time projection chambers (TPC), that are widely considered for current and future direct dark matter searches. The TPC of ReD was irradiated with neutrons at the INFN Laboratori Nazionali del Sud. Data were taken with nuclear recoils of known directions and kinetic energy of 72 keV, which is within the range of interest for WIMP-induced signals in argon. The direction-dependent liquid argon charge recombination model by Cataudella et al. was adopted and a likelihood statistical analysis was performed, which gave no indications of significant dependence of the detector response to the recoil direction. The aspect ratioRof the initial ionization cloud is$$R < 1.072$$R<1.072with 90 % confidence level.

     
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  2. Abstract

    We present a novel approach for the search of dark matter in the DarkSide-50 experiment, relying on Bayesian Networks. This method incorporates the detector response model into the likelihood function, explicitly maintaining the connection with the quantity of interest. No assumptions about the linearity of the problem or the shape of the probability distribution functions are required, and there is no need to morph signal and background spectra as a function of nuisance parameters. By expressing the problem in terms of Bayesian Networks, we have developed an inference algorithm based on a Markov Chain Monte Carlo to calculate the posterior probability. A clever description of the detector response model in terms of parametric matrices allows us to study the impact of systematic variations of any parameter on the final results. Our approach not only provides the desired information on the parameter of interest, but also potential constraints on the response model. Our results are consistent with recent published analyses and further refine the parameters of the detector response model.

     
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  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available October 1, 2024
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  6. Free, publicly-accessible full text available March 1, 2024
  7. Abstract The Aria cryogenic distillation plant, located in Sardinia, Italy, is a key component of the DarkSide-20k experimental program for WIMP dark matter searches at the INFN Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso, Italy. Aria is designed to purify the argon, extracted from underground wells in Colorado, USA, and used as the DarkSide-20k target material, to detector-grade quality. In this paper, we report the first measurement of argon isotopic separation by distillation with the 26 m tall Aria prototype. We discuss the measurement of the operating parameters of the column and the observation of the simultaneous separation of the three stable argon isotopes: $${}^{36}\hbox {Ar}$$ 36 Ar , $${}^{38}\textrm{Ar}$$ 38 Ar , and $${}^{40}\textrm{Ar}$$ 40 Ar . We also provide a detailed comparison of the experimental results with commercial process simulation software. This measurement of isotopic separation of argon is a significant achievement for the project, building on the success of the initial demonstration of isotopic separation of nitrogen using the same equipment in 2019. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available May 1, 2024
  8. Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2024
  9. null (Ed.)
    Finding unambiguous evidence of dark matter interactions in a particle detector is a main objective of physics research. The liquid argon time projection chamber technique for the detection of Weakly Interacting Massive Particles (WIMP) allows sensitivities down to the so-called neutrino floor for high and low WIMP masses. Based on the successful operation of the DarkSide-50 detector, a new and more sensitive experiment, DarkSide-20k, was designed and is now under construction. A thorough understanding of the DarkSide-50 detector response to events classified as dark matter as well as all other interactions is essential for an optimal design of the new experiment. In this paper, we report on a particular set of events, for which scintillation-ionization signals are observed in association with signals from single or few isolated electrons. We identified and provided an interpretation for two event types in which electrons are produced via photoelectric effect on the cathode electrode and in the bulk liquid. Events with photoelectric emissions are observed in association with most interactions with large energy depositions in the detector. From the measured rate of these events, we determine the photo-ionization probability, or photoelectric quantum efficiency, of tetraphenyl butadiene (TPB) at wavelengths around 128 nm. 
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