DAMIC: a direct dark matter search with CCDs

  • Date April 14, 2016
  • Hour 2.30 pm
  • Room LNGS Segrè Hall
  • Speaker Alvaro Chavarria (University of Chicago)

A LNGS-GSSI-UNIVAQ collaboration. The seminar will be chaired by Stefano Ragazzi (LNGS Director). To attend this seminar you need to register by sending an email subjected “DAMIC @LNGS” with your name and surname at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by Wednesday, April 13, at 1 pm. Non-registered people will not be allowed in the facility.



Millimeter-thick charge-coupled devices (CCDs) are outstanding particle detectors. Although initially developed for near-infrared astronomy, the low pixel read-out noise also makes them the most sensitive detectors to signals from ionizing radiation. By virtue of their very low energy threshold (<100 eV of ionization energy), the relatively small mass of their nuclear target (Silicon) and their unique capabilities for background characterization, CCDs are poised to become the leading technology in the search for the faint signals from WIMPs with masses <10 GeV/c/c. I will present the DAMIC100 experiment, a direct  dark matter search consisting of 100 g of CCDs hosted in the low-radioactivity environment of the SNOLAB underground laboratory. I will also discuss the technical challenges of next-generation CCD dark matter experiments, including the pursuit of a single-electron threshold detector and increasing the size of the target to the kg-scale and beyond.


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