Search for Ultra-High Energy Photons with the Pierre Auger Observatory
Keywords:cosmic rays, ultra-high energy photons, upper limits to UHE photon fluxes
AbstractOne of key scientific objectives of the Pierre Auger Observatory is the search for ultra-high energy photons. Such photons could originate either in the interactions of energetic cosmic-ray nuclei with the cosmic microwave background (so-called cosmogenic photons) or in the exotic scenarios, e.g. those assuming a production and decay of some hypothetical super-massive particles. The latter category of models would imply relatively large fluxes of photons with ultra-high energies at Earth, while the former, involving interactions of cosmic-ray nuclei with the microwave background - just the contrary: very small fractions. The investigations on the data collected so far in the Pierre Auger Observatory led to placing very stringent limits to ultra-high energy photon fluxes: below the predictions of the most of the exotic models and nearing the predicted fluxes of the cosmogenic photons. In this paper the status of these investigations and perspectives for further studies are summarized.
New physics searches with photons, connections to astrophysics, and other topics
LicenseAuthors who publish with this journal agree to the following terms:
- Authors retain copyright and grant the journal right of first publication with the work simultaneously licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution License CC-BY-4.0 (link to external page) that allows others to share the work with an acknowledgement of the work's authorship and initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are able to enter into separate, additional contractual arrangements for the non-exclusive distribution of the journal's published version of the work (e.g., post it to an institutional repository or publish it in a book), with an acknowledgement of its initial publication in this journal.
- Authors are permitted and encouraged to post their work online (e.g., in institutional repositories or on their website) prior to and during the submission process, as it can lead to productive exchanges, as well as earlier and greater citation of published work (See The Effect of Open Access).