DEPARTMENT OF COSMIC RAY RESEARCH AND NEUTRINO STUDIES
IFJ PAN Kraków
The subject of the Department's research are cosmic rays in the energy range above 1018 eV.
Particles with such high energies - several orders of magnitude higher than the energies achieved in man-made particle accelerators - reach the
Earth from space. Their origin is unknown and is one of the most important mysteries of modern astrophysics.
The Pierre Auger Project, in which the employees of our Department participate, is dedicated to explaining this riddle.
Within this Project, the Pierre Auger Observatory was built in international cooperation.
We expect that the experimental data collected by this Observatory will allow us to understand the most violent processes in the Universe.
Cosmic ray observatories are located in selected regions of the world, occupying small areas compared to the surface of the entire Earth,
which limits the analysis of cosmic rays on the global scale (e.g. the possibility of the occurrence of phenomena covering an entire hemisphere,
differences depending on the area). To deal with this problem the CREDO project was created - Cosmic-Ray Extremely Distributed Observatory.
The department employees are also involved in neutrino physics research as part of the T2K experiment.
This experiment is carried out in Japan, and its main goal is to study neutrino oscillations, i.e. the change of the neutrino type as it propagates through space.
Searching for matter-antimatter symmetry breaking in neutrino oscillations may help to solve the mystery of why this symmetry got broken at the beginning of the Universe,
which nowadays is made only of matter.