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Journal of Low Temperature Physics 167 (2012) 1029-1034
Superconducting Aluminum Layers as Pulse Shape Modifiers: An Innovative Solution to Fight Against Surface Background in Neutrinoless Double Beta Decay Experiments
C. Nones1, 2, L. Berge1, L. Dumoulin1, S. Marnieros1, E. Olivieri1
(2012)

The most limiting factor for experiments looking for rare events, such as neutrinoless double beta decay, is the radioactive background. We will describe an innovative technique for the discrimination of the surface background which combine the use of thin layers of superconducting aluminum, deposited on a crystal operated as a macro-bolometer and with a fast thermistor, such as a NbSi thin film acting as out-of-equilibrium phonon sensor. The working principle is based on the fact that particles which transfer energy into the Al film create quasi-particles that release heat to the crystal with a considerable delay, that may be in the millisecond range. It is thus clear that pulses acquired from a fast thermistor in the case of surface and bulk events should have different shapes, depending on the place of the initial energy release. Here we present preliminary results on a small TeO2 crystal equipped with NbSi films and an Al film with a thickness of 10 mu m. We prove that we are able to identify alpha surface events by pulse shape analysis with a good separation between bulk and surface events. The possibility to extend this rejection technique to bolometers equipped with slow temperature sensors as neutron transmutation doped Ge thermistors is under study.
1 :  CSNSM - Centre de Spectrométrie Nucléaire et de Spectrométrie de Masse
2 :  SPP - Service de Physique des Particules
CSNSM PS1
CSNSM INSTR
Physique/Matière Condensée/Science des matériaux

Physique/Matière Condensée/Supraconductivité
Neutrinoless double beta decay – Bolometers – Radioactive background – Quasi-particle life time – Pulse shape analysis – THIN-FILMS – IDENTIFICATION – BOLOMETERS – DETECTORS – SEARCH