Although the Standard Model has been extremely successful, several important questions have not been resolved, such as the particle-antiparticle nature of the neutrino, the origin of the matter-antimatter asymmetry, and the composition and interactions of dark matter. The Majorana Demonstrator is an experiment designed for searches for neutrinoless double-beta decay (0νββ) in 76Ge, shedding light on these unanswered questions. In addition to the 0νββ measurement, the low energy range achievable with these detectors gives Majorana a compelling low-energy physics reach with sensitivity to dark matter and axions.
The Demonstrator is comprised of 44 kg (30 kg enriched in 76Ge) of high-purity germanium detectors in low background shielding at the Sanford Underground Research Facility in Lead, South Dakota. The initial goals of the Demonstrator are to establish the required background and scalability of a Ge-based next-generation tonne-scale experiment. Following a commissioning run that started in 2015, the first detector module started physics data production in early 2016. I will discuss initial results of commissioning and first physics run, as well as the status and potential physics reach of the full experiment.
Argonne Physics Division Seminar Schedule