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Response of the Compton polarimeter POLAR to polarized hard X-rays

Abstract : POLAR is a novel compact space-borne Compton polarimeter conceived for a precise measurement of hard X-ray polarization and optimized for the detection of Gamma-Ray Burst (GRB) photons in the energy range 50-500 keV. In December 2009 we have performed a systematic calibration of one modular unit of POLAR at four energy levels (200, 288, 356 and 511 keV) with a 100% polarized synchrotron radiation source at the beam line ID15A at ESRF. The detector was displaced several times on the beam line in order to achieve a uniform illumination, which mimics the flux from a GRB placed on the zenith of the experiment. Several rotations of the detector on the beam axis allowed us to test the response of POLAR to several polarization angles. Two different analysis methods to reconstruct the polarization angle of the beam and the modulation factor μ100 are presented; the first relies on the existence of a unpolarized sample, produced by merging two data sets with orthogonal polarization directions, and is less dependent on systematic effects due to asymmetries in the detector; the second is independent from unpolarized measurements, and will likely be used to analyze the polarization of GRB during the flight. Both methods reconstruct the input polarization angle within 2° and produce modulation factors μ100 between 30% and 50% depending on the beam energy. Monte Carlo simulations performed with GEANT4 confirm the experimental results.
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Submitted on : Tuesday, September 6, 2011 - 4:42:56 PM
Last modification on : Friday, November 6, 2020 - 3:28:57 AM




S. Orsia, D. Haas, W. Hajdas, V. Honkimäki, G. Lamanna, et al.. Response of the Compton polarimeter POLAR to polarized hard X-rays. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment, Elsevier, 2011, 648, pp.139-154. ⟨10.1016/j.nima.2011.04.012⟩. ⟨in2p3-00619652⟩



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