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  1. Abstract

    We present here a characterization of the low background NaI(Tl) crystal NaI-33 based on a period of almost one year of data taking (891 kg$$\times $$×days exposure) in a detector configuration with no use of organic scintillator veto. This remarkably radio-pure crystal already showed a low background in the SABRE Proof-of-Principle (PoP) detector, in the low energy region of interest (1–6 keV) for the search of dark matter interaction via the annual modulation signature. As the vetoable background components, such as$$^{40}$$40K, are here sub-dominant, we reassembled the PoP setup with a fully passive shielding. We upgraded the selection of events based on a Boosted Decision Tree algorithm that rejects most of the PMT-induced noise while retaining scintillation signals with > 90% efficiency in 1–6 keV. We find an average background of 1.39 ± 0.02 counts/day/kg/keV in the region of interest and a spectrum consistent with data previously acquired in the PoP setup, where the external veto background suppression was in place. Our background model indicates that the dominant background component is due to decays of$$^{210}$$210Pb, only partly residing in the crystal itself. The other location of$$^{210}$$210Pb is the reflector foil that wraps the crystal. We now proceed to design the experimental setup for the physics phase of the SABRE North detector, based on an array of similar crystals, using a low radioactivity PTFE reflector and further improving the passive shielding strategy, in compliance with the new safety and environmental requirements of Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso.

     
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  2. The dark matter interpretation of the DAMA/LIBRA annual modulation signal represents a long-standing open question in astroparticle physics. The SABRE experiment aims to test such claim, bringing the same detection technique to an unprecedented sensitivity. Based on ultra-low background NaI(Tl) scintillating crystals like DAMA, SABRE features a liquid scintillator Veto system, surrounding the main target, and it will deploy twin detectors: one in the Northern hemisphere at Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso (LNGS), Italy and the other in the Stawell Underground Physics Laboratory (SUPL), Australia, first laboratory of this kind in the Southern hemisphere. The first very-high-purity crystal produced by the collaboration was shipped to LNGS in 2019 for characterization. It features a potassium contamination, measured by mass spectroscopy, of the order of 4 ppb, about three times lower than DAMA/LIBRA crystals. The first phase of the SABRE experiment is a Proof-of-Principle (PoP) detector featuring one crystal and a liquid scintillator Veto, at LNGS. This contribution will present the results of the stand-alone characterization of the first SABRE high-purity crystal, as well as the status of the PoP detector, commissioned early in the summer of 2020. 
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  3. Abstract An array of twelve 0.28 kg lithium molybdate (LMO) low-temperature bolometers equipped with 16 bolometric Ge light detectors, aiming at optimization of detector structure for CROSS and CUPID double-beta decay experiments, was constructed and tested in a low-background pulse-tube-based cryostat at the Canfranc underground laboratory in Spain. Performance of the scintillating bolometers was studied depending on the size of phonon NTD-Ge sensors glued to both LMO and Ge absorbers, shape of the Ge light detectors (circular vs. square, from two suppliers), in different light collection conditions (with and without reflector, with aluminum coated LMO crystal surface). The scintillating bolometer array was operated over 8 months in the low-background conditions that allowed to probe a very low, μBq/kg, level of the LMO crystals radioactive contamination by 228 Th and 226 Ra. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2024
  4. Abstract CUPID is a next-generation bolometric experiment aiming at searching for neutrinoless double-beta decay with ∼250 kg of isotopic mass of 100 Mo. It will operate at ∼10 mK in a cryostat currently hosting a similar-scale bolometric array for the CUORE experiment at the Gran Sasso National Laboratory (Italy). CUPID will be based on large-volume scintillating bolometers consisting of 100 Mo-enriched Li 2 MoO 4 crystals, facing thin Ge-wafer-based bolometric light detectors. In the CUPID design, the detector structure is novel and needs to be validated. In particular, the CUORE cryostat presents a high level of mechanical vibrations due to the use of pulse tubes and the effect of vibrations on the detector performance must be investigated. In this paper we report the first test of the CUPID-design bolometric light detectors with NTD-Ge sensors in a dilution refrigerator equipped with a pulse tube in an above-ground lab. Light detectors are characterized in terms of sensitivity, energy resolution, pulse time constants, and noise power spectrum. Despite the challenging noisy environment due to pulse-tube-induced vibrations, we demonstrate that all the four tested light detectors comply with the CUPID goal in terms of intrinsic energy resolution of 100 eV RMS baseline noise. Indeed, we have measured 70–90 eV RMS for the four devices, which show an excellent reproducibility. We have also obtained high energy resolutions at the 356 keV line from a 133 Ba source, as good as Ge semiconductor γ detectors in this energy range. 
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    Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2024
  5. Abstract

    Ultra-pure NaI(Tl) crystals are the key element for a model-independent verification of the long standing DAMA result and a powerful means to search for the annual modulation signature of dark matter interactions. The SABRE collaboration has been developing cutting-edge techniques for the reduction of intrinsic backgrounds over several years. In this paper we report the first characterization of a 3.4 kg crystal, named NaI-33, performed in an underground passive shielding setup at LNGS. NaI-33 has a record low$$^{39}$$39K contamination of 4.3 ± 0.2 ppb as determined by mass spectrometry. We measured a light yield of 11.1 ± 0.2 photoelectrons/keV and an energy resolution of 13.2% (FWHM/E) at 59.5 keV. We evaluated the activities of$$^{226}$$226Ra and$$^{228}$$228Th inside the crystal to be$$5.9\pm 0.6~\upmu $$5.9±0.6μBq/kg and$$1.6\pm 0.3~\upmu $$1.6±0.3μBq/kg, respectively, which would indicate a contamination from$$^{238}$$238U and$$^{232}$$232Th at part-per-trillion level. We measured an activity of 0.51 ± 0.02 mBq/kg due to$$^{210}$$210Pb out of equilibrium and a$$\alpha $$αquenching factor of 0.63 ± 0.01 at 5304 keV. We illustrate the analyses techniques developed to reject electronic noise in the lower part of the energy spectrum. A cut-based strategy and a multivariate approach indicated a rate, attributed to the intrinsic radioactivity of the crystal, of$$\sim $$1 count/day/kg/keV in the [5–20] keV region.

     
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  6. Abstract The Cryogenic Underground Observatory for Rare Events (CUORE) is the most sensitive experiment searching for neutrinoless double-beta decay (0 νββ ) in 130 Te. CUORE uses a cryogenic array of 988 TeO 2 calorimeters operated at ∼10 mK with a total mass of 741 kg. To further increase the sensitivity, the detector response must be well understood. Here, we present a non-linear thermal model for the CUORE experiment on a detector-by-detector basis. We have examined both equilibrium and dynamic electro-thermal models of detectors by numerically fitting non-linear differential equations to the detector data of a subset of CUORE channels which are well characterized and representative of all channels. We demonstrate that the hot-electron effect and electric-field dependence of resistance in NTD-Ge thermistors alone are inadequate to describe our detectors' energy-dependent pulse shapes. We introduce an empirical second-order correction factor in the exponential temperature dependence of the thermistor, which produces excellent agreement with energy-dependent pulse shape data up to 6 MeV. We also present a noise analysis using the fitted thermal parameters and show that the intrinsic thermal noise is negligible compared to the observed noise for our detectors. 
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  7. Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2024
  8. Abstract

    The Cryogenic Underground Observatory for Rare Events (CUORE) is the first cryogenic experiment searching for$$0\nu \beta \beta $$0νββdecay that has been able to reach the one-tonne mass scale. The detector, located at the Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso (LNGS) in Italy, consists of an array of 988$${\mathrm{TeO}}_{2}$$TeO2crystals arranged in a compact cylindrical structure of 19 towers. CUORE began its first physics data run in 2017 at a base temperature of about 10 mK and in April 2021 released its$$3{\mathrm{rd}}$$3rdresult of the search for$$0\nu \beta \beta $$0νββ, corresponding to a tonne-year of$$\mathrm{TeO}_{2}$$TeO2exposure. This is the largest amount of data ever acquired with a solid state detector and the most sensitive measurement of$$0\nu \beta \beta $$0νββdecay in$${}^{130}\mathrm{Te}$$130Teever conducted . We present the current status of CUORE search for$$0\nu \beta \beta $$0νββwith the updated statistics of one tonne-yr. We finally give an update of the CUORE background model and the measurement of the$${}^{130}\mathrm{Te}$$130Te$$2\nu \beta \beta $$2νββdecay half-life and decay to excited states of$${}^{130}\mathrm{Xe}$$130Xe, studies performed using an exposure of 300.7 kg yr.

     
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