Measurement of the gluon parton distribution function at small x with neutrino telescopes

Phys. Rev. D 63, 036006 – Published 10 January 2001
Graciela Gelmini, Paolo Gondolo, and Gabriele Varieschi

Abstract

We analyze the possibility that neutrino telescopes may provide an experimental determination of the slope λ of the gluon distribution in the proton at momentum fractions x smaller than the accelerator reach. The method is based on a linear relation between λ and the spectral index (slope) of the down-going atmospheric muon flux above 100 TeV, for which there is no background. Considering the uncertainties in the charm production cross section and in the cosmic ray composition, we estimate the error on the measurement of λ through this method, excluding the experimental error of the telescopes, to be ±0.2.

DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.1103/PhysRevD.63.036006

  • Received 31 March 2000
  • Revised 4 October 2000
  • Published 10 January 2001

© 2001 The American Physical Society

Authors & Affiliations

Graciela Gelmini*

  • Department of Physics and Astronomy, UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles), 405 Hilgard Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90095

Paolo Gondolo

  • Max-Planck-Institut für Physik, Werner-Heisenberg-Institut, Föhringer Ring 6, 80805 München, Germany

Gabriele Varieschi

  • Department of Physics and Astronomy, UCLA (University of California, Los Angeles), 405 Hilgard Avenue, Los Angeles, California 90095
  • Department of Physics, Loyola Marymount University, 7900 Loyola Boulevard, Los Angeles, California 90045

  • *Email address: gelmini@physics.ucla.edu
  • Present address: Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland, OH. Email address: gondolo@mppmu.mpg.de
  • Email address: variesch@physics.ucla.edu, gvariesc@lmumail. lmu.edu

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