The HiSPARC experiment

K. van Dam*, B. van Eijk, D. B.R.A. Fokkema, J. W. van Holten, A. P.L.S. de Laat, N. G. Schultheiss, J. J.M. Steijger, J. C. Verkooijen

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

The High School Project on Astrophysics Research with Cosmics (HiSPARC) is a large extensive air shower (EAS) array with detection stations throughout the Netherlands, United Kingdom, Denmark and Namibia. HiSPARC is a collaboration of universities, scientific institutes and high schools. The majority of detection stations is hosted by high schools. A HiSPARC station consists of two or four scintillators placed inside roof boxes on top of a building. The measured response of a detector to single incoming muons agrees well with GEANT4 simulations. The response of a station to EASs agrees with simulations as well. A four-scintillator station was integrated in the KASCADE experiment and was used to determine the accuracy of the shower direction reconstruction. Using simulations, the trigger efficiency of a station to detect a shower as function of both distance to the shower core and zenith angle was determined. The HiSPARC experiment is taking data since 2003. The number of stations (∼140 in 2019) still increases. The project demonstrates that its approach is viable for educational purposes and that scientific data can be obtained in a collaboration with high school students and teachers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number163577
Pages (from-to)1-17
Number of pages17
JournalNuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research, Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment
Volume959
Early online date5 Feb 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 5 Feb 2020

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Keywords

  • Cosmic rays
  • Extensive air shower detector
  • High school
  • HiSPARC
  • Outreach
  • Scintillation detector

Cite this

van Dam, K., van Eijk, B., Fokkema, D. B. R. A., van Holten, J. W., de Laat, A. P. L. S., Schultheiss, N. G., ... Verkooijen, J. C. (2020). The HiSPARC experiment. Nuclear Instruments and Methods in Physics Research, Section A: Accelerators, Spectrometers, Detectors and Associated Equipment, 959, 1-17. [163577]. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.nima.2020.163577