Searches for new physics at MiniBooNE : sterile neutrinos and mixing freedom
Author(s)Karagiorgi, Georgia S. (Georgia Stelios)
Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Physics.
Janet M. Conrad.
MetadataShow full item record
The MiniBooNE experiment was designed to perform a search for Vu --> Ve oscillations in a region of A[delta]sin 2 20very different from that allowed by standard, three neutrino oscillations, as determined by solar and atmospheric neutrino experiments. This search was motivated by the LSND experimental observation of an excess of F/e events in a 1,1 beam which was found compatible with two-neutrino oscillations at [delta]m 2 ~ 1 eV2 and sin2 20 < 1%. If confirmed, such oscillation signature could be attributed to the existence of a light, mostly-sterile neutrino, containing small admixtures of weak neutrino eigenstates. In addition to a search for Vu --> Ve oscillations, MiniBooNE has also performed a search for Vu -->Ve oscillations, which provides a test of the LSND two-neutrino oscillation interpretation that is independent of CP or CPT violation assumptions. This dissertation presents the MiniBooNE Vu -->Ve and Vu --> Ve analyses and results, with emphasis on the latter. While the neutrino search excludes the two-neutrino oscillation interpretation of LSND at 98% C.L., the antineutrino search shows an excess of events which is in agreement with the two neutrino Vu -->Ve oscillation interpretation of LSND, and excludes the no oscillations hypothesis at 96% C.L. Even though the neutrino and antineutrino oscillation results from MiniBooNE disagree under the single sterile neutrino oscillation hypothesis, a simple extension to the model to include additional sterile neutrino states and the possibility of CP violation allows for differences between neutrino and antineutrino oscillation signatures. In view of that, the viability of oscillation models with one or two sterile neutrinos is investigated in global fits to MiniBooNE and LSND data, with and without constraints from other oscillation experiments with similar sensitivities to those models. A general search for new physics scenarios which would lead to effective non-unitarity of the standard 3 x 3 neutrino mixing matrix, or mixing freedom, is also performed using neutrino and antineutrino data available from MiniBooNE.
Thesis (Ph. D.)--Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Dept. of Physics, 2010.Cataloged from PDF version of thesis.Includes bibliographical references (p. 294-306).
DepartmentMassachusetts Institute of Technology. Dept. of Physics.
Massachusetts Institute of Technology