Estimating the mass of cosmic rays by combining radio and muon measurements
Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT), Institut für Kernphysik,
2 Instituto de Tecnologías en Detección y Astropartículas (CNEA, CONICET, UNSAM), CABA, Argentina
3 Observatorio Pierre Auger, Av. San Martín Norte 304, 5613 Malargüe, Argentina
Published online: 24 September 2019
The Auger Engineering Radio Array (AERA) is a radio detector at the Pierre Auger Observatory and it is dedicated to measure the radio emission of cosmic-ray air showers. AERA is co-located with the underground muon detectors of the Auger Muons and Infill for the Ground Array (AMIGA). This provides a perfect setup to experimentally test the benefits of combining muons and radio emission for estimating the primary mass. We have investigated this combination using air-shower simulations. We compared the performance for mass separation of this new method to alternative methods in which the electrons and muons are measured with particle detectors at the surface. Forshowers with zenith angles below 50° the new method is of comparable performance, and for showers more inclinedthan 50° it is clearly superior. Therefore, measuring the radio signal in addition to the muons significantly improves the mass sensitivity compared to techniques using solely particle measurements.
© The Authors, published by EDP Sciences, 2019
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License 4.0, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.