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  1. ABSTRACT In this work, we combine spectroscopic information from the SkyMapper survey for Extremely Metal-Poor stars and astrometry from Gaia DR2 to investigate the kinematics of a sample of 475 stars with a metallicity range of $-6.5 \le \rm [Fe/H] \le -2.05$ dex. Exploiting the action map, we identify 16 and 40 stars dynamically consistent with the Gaia Sausage and Gaia Sequoia accretion events, respectively. The most metal poor of these candidates have metallicities of $\rm [Fe/H]=-3.31\, \mathrm{ and }\, -3.74$, respectively, helping to define the low-metallicity tail of the progenitors involved in the accretion events. We also find, consistentmore »with other studies, that ∼21 per cent of the sample have orbits that remain confined to within 3 kpc of the Galactic plane, that is, |Zmax| ≤ 3 kpc. Of particular interest is a subsample (∼11 per cent of the total) of low |Zmax| stars with low eccentricities and prograde motions. The lowest metallicity of these stars has [Fe/H] = –4.30 and the subsample is best interpreted as the very low-metallicity tail of the metal-weak thick disc population. The low |Zmax|, low eccentricity stars with retrograde orbits are likely accreted, while the low |Zmax|, high eccentricity pro- and retrograde stars are plausibly associated with the Gaia Sausage system. We find that a small fraction of our sample (∼4 per cent of the total) is likely escaping from the Galaxy, and postulate that these stars have gained energy from gravitational interactions that occur when infalling dwarf galaxies are tidally disrupted.« less
  2. Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2023
  3. Free, publicly-accessible full text available June 1, 2023
  4. Abstract The possibility that neutrinos may be their own antiparticles, unique among the known fundamental particles, arises from the symmetric theory of fermions proposed by Ettore Majorana in 1937 1 . Given the profound consequences of such Majorana neutrinos, among which is a potential explanation for the matter–antimatter asymmetry of the universe via leptogenesis 2 , the Majorana nature of neutrinos commands intense experimental scrutiny globally; one of the primary experimental probes is neutrinoless double beta (0 νββ ) decay. Here we show results from the search for 0 νββ decay of 130 Te, using the latest advanced cryogenic calorimetersmore »with the CUORE experiment 3 . CUORE, operating just 10 millikelvin above absolute zero, has pushed the state of the art on three frontiers: the sheer mass held at such ultralow temperatures, operational longevity, and the low levels of ionizing radiation emanating from the cryogenic infrastructure. We find no evidence for 0 νββ decay and set a lower bound of the process half-life as 2.2 × 10 25  years at a 90 per cent credibility interval. We discuss potential applications of the advances made with CUORE to other fields such as direct dark matter, neutrino and nuclear physics searches and large-scale quantum computing, which can benefit from sustained operation of large payloads in a low-radioactivity, ultralow-temperature cryogenic environment.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available April 7, 2023
  5. ABSTRACT We present and discuss the results of a search for extremely metal-poor stars based on photometry from data release DR1.1 of the SkyMapper imaging survey of the southern sky. In particular, we outline our photometric selection procedures and describe the low-resolution (R ≈ 3000) spectroscopic follow-up observations that are used to provide estimates of effective temperature, surface gravity, and metallicity ([Fe/H]) for the candidates. The selection process is very efficient: of the 2618 candidates with low-resolution spectra that have photometric metallicity estimates less than or equal to −2.0, 41 per cent have [Fe/H] ≤ −2.75 and only approximately seven per cent have [Fe/H] > −2.0 dex. Themore »most metal-poor candidate in the sample has [Fe/H] < −4.75 and is notably carbon rich. Except at the lowest metallicities ([Fe/H] < −4), the stars observed spectroscopically are dominated by a ‘carbon-normal’ population with [C/Fe]1D, LTE ≤ +1 dex. Consideration of the A(C)1D, LTE versus [Fe/H]1D, LTE diagram suggests that the current selection process is strongly biased against stars with A(C)1D, LTE > 7.3 (predominantly CEMP-s) while any bias against stars with A(C)1D, LTE < 7.3 and [C/Fe]1D,LTE > +1 (predominantly CEMP-no) is not readily quantifiable given the uncertainty in the SkyMapper v-band DR1.1 photometry. We find that the metallicity distribution function of the observed sample has a power-law slope of Δ(Log N)/Δ[Fe/H] = 1.5 ± 0.1 dex per dex for −4.0 ≤ [Fe/H] ≤ −2.75, but appears to drop abruptly at [Fe/H] ≈ −4.2, in line with previous studies.« less
  6. ABSTRACT We report the discovery of SMSS J160540.18−144323.1, a new ultra metal-poor halo star discovered with the SkyMapper telescope. We measure $\left[\rm {Fe}/\rm {H}\right]= -6.2 \pm 0.2$ (1D LTE), the lowest ever detected abundance of iron in a star. The star is strongly carbon-enhanced, $\left[\rm {C}/\rm {Fe}\right] = 3.9 \pm 0.2$, while other abundances are compatible with an α-enhanced solar-like pattern with $\left[\rm {Ca}/\rm {Fe}\right] = 0.4 \pm 0.2$, $\left[\rm {Mg}/\rm {Fe}\right] = 0.6 \pm 0.2$, $\left[\rm {Ti}/\rm {Fe}\right] = 0.8 \pm 0.2$, and no significant s- or r-process enrichment, $\left[\rm {Sr}/\rm {Fe}\right] \lt 0.2$ and $\left[\rm {Ba}/\rm {Fe}\right] \ltmore »1.0$ (3σ limits). Population III stars exploding as fallback supernovae may explain both the strong carbon enhancement and the apparent lack of enhancement of odd-Z and neutron-capture element abundances. Grids of supernova models computed for metal-free progenitor stars yield good matches for stars of about $10\, \rm M_\odot$ imparting a low kinetic energy on the supernova ejecta, while models for stars more massive than roughly $20\, \rm M_\odot$ are incompatible with the observed abundance pattern.« less
  7. Abstract Quantum chromodynamics, the theory of the strong force, describes interactions of coloured quarks and gluons and the formation of hadronic matter. Conventional hadronic matter consists of baryons and mesons made of three quarks and quark-antiquark pairs, respectively. Particles with an alternative quark content are known as exotic states. Here a study is reported of an exotic narrow state in the D 0 D 0 π + mass spectrum just below the D *+ D 0 mass threshold produced in proton-proton collisions collected with the LHCb detector at the Large Hadron Collider. The state is consistent with the ground isoscalarmore »$${{{{{{\rm{T}}}}}}}_{{{{{{\rm{c}}}}}}{{{{{\rm{c}}}}}}}^{+}$$ T c c + tetraquark with a quark content of $${{{{{\rm{c}}}}}}{{{{{\rm{c}}}}}}\overline{{{{{{\rm{u}}}}}}}\overline{{{{{{\rm{d}}}}}}}$$ c c u ¯ d ¯ and spin-parity quantum numbers J P  = 1 + . Study of the DD mass spectra disfavours interpretation of the resonance as the isovector state. The decay structure via intermediate off-shell D *+ mesons is consistent with the observed D 0 π + mass distribution. To analyse the mass of the resonance and its coupling to the D * D system, a dedicated model is developed under the assumption of an isoscalar axial-vector $${{{{{{\rm{T}}}}}}}_{{{{{{\rm{c}}}}}}{{{{{\rm{c}}}}}}}^{+}$$ T c c + state decaying to the D * D channel. Using this model, resonance parameters including the pole position, scattering length, effective range and compositeness are determined to reveal important information about the nature of the $${{{{{{\rm{T}}}}}}}_{{{{{{\rm{c}}}}}}{{{{{\rm{c}}}}}}}^{+}$$ T c c + state. In addition, an unexpected dependence of the production rate on track multiplicity is observed.« less
    Free, publicly-accessible full text available December 1, 2023