Recent Results and Future Prospects of the South Pole Acoustic Test Setup

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Aithousa Mitropoulos ()

Aithousa Mitropoulos

Megaron, Athens - Greece


Rolf Nahnhauer (DESY, Zeuthen)


The feasibility and specific design of an acoustic sensor array as part of a large volume ultra high energy neutrino detector at the South Pole depends strongly on the acoustic ice properties and the noise condition in that area. The South Pole Acoustic Test Setup - "SPATS" has been built to evaluate these problems. Four strings, co-deployed in IceCube holes down to 400 m-500 m, carry seven acoustic stations each. The three sensors of each station register artificial sound signals produced by SPATS transmitters or a movable transmitter used in yet water-filled holes at different depths. Also sound from re-freezing bore-holes and other anthropogenic sources is received by SPATS. The observed signals allow for the measurement of the sound speed versus depth and the sound attenuation in ice down to 400 m. Corresponding results will be shown. The efficiency and precision with which sound sources can be located in the vicinity of the detector will be given. A preliminary upper limit for the absolute noise level will be estimated. The prospects of acoustic neutrino detection within these conditions will be discussed.

Primary author

Rolf Nahnhauer (DESY, Zeuthen)

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