Link to the University of Pittsburgh Homepage
Link to the University Library System Homepage Link to the Contact Us Form

Measurement of Muon Antineutrino Charged-Current Neutral Pion Production Differential Cross Section in the NOvA Near Detector

Gao, Fan (2023) Measurement of Muon Antineutrino Charged-Current Neutral Pion Production Differential Cross Section in the NOvA Near Detector. Doctoral Dissertation, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

Download (58MB) | Preview


The NOvA (NuMI Off-axis $\nu_e$ Appearance) experiment aims to answer some of the outstanding questions in neutrino oscillation physics. As a long-baseline neutrino oscillation experiment, NOvA is primarily designed to measure the $\nu_{\mu}/\bar{\nu}_{\mu}$ disappearance and $\nu_e/\bar{\nu}_e$ appearance in the off-axis Fermilab NuMI beam. It uses two functionally identical liquid scintillator detectors separated by 810 km and a narrow band beam centered around 2 GeV. The high statistics data in the NOvA near detector can be used to perform precise neutrino interaction cross-section measurements.

This thesis describes the measurement of the differential cross section for the $\bar{\nu}_{\mu}$ charged-current (CC) $\pi^0$ production in the NOvA near detector, using data collected from June 2016 to February 2019, corresponding to an exposure of $11.97\times 10^{20}$ protons-on-target (POT) of a primarily antineutrino beam. While the related neutrino-induced process has several precise measurements, the measurement using the antineutrino mode data is much less studied. It is of particular importance for the oscillation measurements, as energetic $\pi^0$ produced in $\Delta$ resonance, deep-inelastic interactions, or final state interactions (FSI) are a significant background to the $\nu_e$ appearance channel as the photons coming from $\pi^0$ decay may be misidentified as electrons. The analysis uses a convolutional neural network (CNN) trained on individually simulated particles to identify $\pi^0$ in the final state, which is critical for removing bias coming from the cross-section model. A data-driven template fit approach is used to constrain backgrounds. The flux-integrated differential cross section is measured with respect to final-state $\pi^0$ momentum and angle, as well as the total cross section integrated over the $\pi^0$ kinematic phase space.


Social Networking:
Share |


Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Gao, Fanfag16@pitt.edufag160000-0001-7539-3863
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairNaples,
Committee MemberBatell,
Committee MemberKosowsky,
Committee MemberPaolone,
Committee MemberMorningstar,
Date: 6 September 2023
Date Type: Publication
Defense Date: 30 January 2023
Approval Date: 6 September 2023
Submission Date: 12 June 2023
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Number of Pages: 200
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: Dietrich School of Arts and Sciences > Physics
Degree: PhD - Doctor of Philosophy
Thesis Type: Doctoral Dissertation
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: neutrino physics, NOvA experiment, cross-section measurement, neutral pion production
Date Deposited: 06 Sep 2023 15:52
Last Modified: 06 Sep 2023 15:52


Monthly Views for the past 3 years

Plum Analytics

Actions (login required)

View Item View Item