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Physics colloquium-“Hunting for High-Energy Cosmic Radiation: The Coherent Radio Technique”

January 23 @ 4:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Austin Cummings

Penn State, Department of Physics

Abstract: Cosmic rays and neutrinos provide a unique window into observations of the most violent physical phenomena in the universe. At the highest energies, the flux of these particles at Earth is incredibly low, making direct detection challenging. For neutrinos, the problem is further compounded by their miniscule interaction probabilities. By measuring emission from particle cascades sourced from cosmic ray or neutrino interactions, it is possible to cost-effectively instrument large detection volumes and improve the chances of detection. In this talk, I will introduce the method of indirect detection of these cosmic particles through the measurement of coherent radio emission, highlighting the strengths and weaknesses of the technique. I will describe many of the active experimental efforts which hunt for neutrinos using radio observations and where they fit within the landscape of high-energy multi-messenger astronomy.

Bio: Austin is a postdoctoral scholar at The Pennsylvania State University, associated with the Institute for Gravitation and the Cosmos and the Departments of Astronomy and Astrophyiscs. He previously obtained his B.S. in Engineering Physics and M.S. in Applied Physics at The Colorado School of Mines and his Ph.D in Astroparticle Physics at Gran Sasso Science Institute in L’Aquila, Italy. Austin is engaged in a wide array of unique experiments which aim to add high energy neutrinos to the emerging picture of multi-messenger astrophysics. His current work includes the modeling of neutrino propagation and interactions at the highest energies, parameterizing the optical and radio emission from extensive air showers, and optimizing the next generation neutrino telescopes. Outside of his studies, Austin likes running, riding motorcycles, and playing D&D.

Pre-seminar snacks will be served in CoorsTek 150 from 3:30-4:00pm; lecture will take place in CTLM102.


January 23
4:00 pm - 5:00 pm
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Center for Technology and Learning Media (CTLM)
1650 Arapahoe St.
Golden, CO 80401 United States
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