Issue 05, February 12 2018

Thank you for your continued support and interest in the McDonald Institute and the Canadian Astroparticle Physics community.

We realize that our monthly newsletter can only convey a small part of a much larger network of research. If you have some news that you'd like to share with the community, please let us know at or click button to use the form on our website
First experimental results to be published from DEAP-3600
The DEAP-3600 consortium has posted its first dark matter experimental-data to The three-tonne dark-matter direct-detection experiment at SNOLAB is one of the first to operate at such a large scale and the “ Dark Matter Experiment using Argon Pulse-shape” is part of multi-decade journey from bench-scale to massive multi-tonne cryogenic liquid scintillation detectors.

“I am very pleased with the year one results from the DEAP-3600 experiment, which demonstrate a new technique using liquid argon for a dark matter particle search,” says Carleton University Prof. Mark Boulay, the spokesperson for DEAP-3600. “This program will extend our sensitivity to dark matter, with the exciting potential of observing for the first time this dominant component of our universe.”
These are the first experimental results to be published from DEAP-3600. An earlier paper provided operating data showing the 3-tonne detector’s successful commissioning and stable operation.
The paper “Search for dark matter with a 231-day exposure of liquid argon using DEAP-3600 at SNOLAB” is based on analysis of the first year of experimental data since the experiment was brought online in 2016.  Long-term data collection with a blinding scheme commenced in January 2018 and the experiment will continue to collect data until at least the end of 2020 to reach its full sensitivity. DEAP-3600 is a much larger version of the smaller scale liquid argon experiment, DEAP-1, which operated at SNOLAB until 2011.

DEAP-3600 is hosted at SNOLAB and is currently operated and maintained by more than 80 scientists, technicians and students.

Frontier Research Venture Fund Announcement:
The Frontier Research Venture Fund (FRVF) aims to enable the Canadian astroparticle physics community to maximize the scientific output from the suite of experiments that are currently operational or under development. We’d like to congratulate the two successful recipients of the first MI FRVF competition.

 In partnership with Ocean Networks Canada, a collaboration led by Queens University and the University of Alberta is receiving $96,800 in support for the construction of a new neutrino observatory in the Cascadia Basin, off the Pacific coast of Canada, with the goal of analyzing the potential of a Pacific-ocean-based detector to study phenomena such as neutrino oscillations, non-standard interactions, atmospheric neutrinos and indirect dark matter detection.
Experts from the University de Sherbrooke, Queens University, Carleton University, McGill and TRIUMF will also receive $84,000 in funding to advance the implementation of a new silicon processing technique on the 3-Dimensionally integrated digital SiPMs for applications in liquid Xenon and liquid Argon for dark matter search.

image: 2D-SPADs chips (left and right) connected to chip probe(center) for active electronics readout.
The McDonald Institute is seeking new applicants for the second round of the FRVF competition! Please review the Guidelines below and our webpage for details. Applications for this round of funding will be accepted until Monday March 11 th .

If you would like to be contacted for all future competitions by the McDonald Institute, click here to sign up for notifications.

IGnite: Research Stories to Inspire Generations

At the end of January, over 100 people braved the cold to attend the second IGnite event. Dr. Laura Murray and Dr. John Smol both gave fantastic talks that had everyone engaged and asking questions. We had a great variety of science demos and photos from the Art of Research exhibit.
See this post for more photos and a recap of the event:
Upcoming Events: McDonald Institute Seminars
image: Roxanne Guenette (Harvard) speaks with Payam Pakarha and Art McDonald

The McDonald Institute Seminars feature visiting researchers from around the country and abroad. Speakers are selected for their unique research and presentation ability. The series aims to foster a collaborative spirit within the astroparticle physics and astronomy community by sharing knowledge and research approaches across institutions.

The next MI Seminar will be Thursday, February 28th from 2:30-3:30 PM in Stirling Hall, room 501. Our speaker will be Sean Tulin from York University, Tulin is a theoretical physicist whose research lies at the interface of particle physics, astrophysics, nuclear physics, and cosmology.

Dates for future seminars can be found here:

Donate your physics books!
We have received several requests for a resource library to be available to the astroparticle student community as many books are not readily available through the University and can be quite expensive for individual students to buy.

If you have books that you'd like to donate, please contact Diana in Stirling 304B .
You'll be acknowledged as the donor inside the books. The library will be located in 412D.