Modeling neutrino-nucleus interactions at the exclusive frontier of neutrino measurements

01 October 2023 → 30 September 2026
Regional and community funding: Special Research Fund
Research disciplines
  • Natural sciences
    • Experimental particle physics
    • Phenomenological particle physics
    • Theoretical aspects of nuclear physics
neutrino-nucleus interaction Monte Carlo neutrino event generators
Project description

The reason for the dominance of matter over antimatter in our universe is one of the most puzzling questions of modern physics. Recently, through the experimental confirmation of neutrino oscillations, for which T. Kajita and A. McDonald were awarded the Nobel Prize in Physics in 2015, we opened a new door to investigate possible explanations of this phenomenon. The essential observation would be a slight discrepancy between the oscillation probability of neutrinos and antineutrinos. As a consequence, a considerable number of experimental collaborations are trying to understand neutrinos, their properties, and their interactions. Accelerator-based neutrino experiments provide a unique framework allowing for an extensive study of neutrino oscillations. However, they strongly rely on the accuracy with which we model neutrino interactions with nuclei used as the target. Soon, experiments will be limited by systematics rather than statistics, requiring an exceptionally precise understanding of the neutrino-nucleus scattering process to facilitate further reduction of the systematic uncertainties and lead to awaited discoveries. In this project, we want to develop microscopic neutrino interaction models, focusing on outgoing hadrons so we can confront them with these modern exclusive neutrino cross section measurements. Then, we wish to implement the refined modeling methods into Monte Carlo event generators used directly in experimental oscillation analyses.