Measurement of the scintillation and ionization response of liquid xenon at MeV energies in the EXO-200 experiment

G. Anton, I. Badhrees, P. S. Barbeau, D. Beck, V. Belov, T. Bhatta, M. Breidenbach, T. Brunner, G. F. Cao, W. R. Cen, C. Chambers, B. Cleveland, M. Coon, A. Craycraft, T. Daniels, L. Darroch, S. J. Daugherty, J. Davis, S. Delaquis, A. Der Mesrobian-KabakianR. Devoe, J. Dilling, A. Dolgolenko, M. J. Dolinski, J. Echevers, Jr Fairbank, D. Fairbank, J. Farine, S. Feyzbakhsh, P. Fierlinger, D. Fudenberg, P. Gautam, R. Gornea, G. Gratta, C. Hall, E. V. Hansen, J. Hoessl, P. Hufschmidt, M. Hughes, A. Iverson, A. Jamil, C. Jessiman, M. J. Jewell, A. Johnson, A. Karelin, L. J. Kaufman, T. Koffas, R. Krücken, A. Kuchenkov, K. S. Kumar, Y. Lan, A. Larson, B. G. Lenardo, D. S. Leonard, G. S. Li, S. Li, Z. Li, C. Licciardi, Y. H. Lin, R. Maclellan, T. Mcelroy, T. Michel, B. Mong, D. C. Moore, K. Murray, R. Neilson, O. Njoya, O. Nusair, A. Odian, I. Ostrovskiy, A. Piepke, A. Pocar, F. Retière, A. L. Robinson, P. C. Rowson, J. Runge, S. Schmidt, D. Sinclair, A. K. Soma, V. Stekhanov, M. Tarka, J. Todd, T. Tolba, D. Tosi, T. I. Totev, B. Veenstra, V. Veeraraghavan, J. L. Vuilleumier, M. Wagenpfeil, J. Watkins, M. Weber, L. J. Wen, U. Wichoski, G. Wrede, S. X. Wu, Q. Xia, D. R. Yahne, L. Yang, Y. R. Yen, O. Ya Zeldovich, T. Ziegler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

20 Scopus citations


Liquid xenon (LXe) is employed in a number of current and future detectors for rare event searches. We use the EXO-200 experimental data to measure the absolute scintillation and ionization yields generated by γ interactions from Th228 (2615 keV), Ra226 (1764 keV), and Co60 (1332 keV and 1173 keV) calibration sources, over a range of electric fields. The W value that defines the recombination-independent energy scale is measured to be 11.5±0.5 (syst.) ±0.1 (stat.) eV. These data are also used to measure the recombination fluctuations in the number of electrons and photons produced by the calibration sources at the MeV scale, which deviate from extrapolations of lower-energy data. Additionally, a semiempirical model for the energy resolution of the detector is developed, which is used to constrain the recombination efficiency, i.e., the fraction of recombined electrons that result in the emission of a detectable photon. Detailed measurements of the absolute charge and light yields for MeV-scale electron recoils are important for predicting the performance of future neutrinoless double β-decay detectors.

Original languageEnglish
Article number065501
JournalPhysical Review C
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
We thank Matthew Szydagis and Jason Brodsky for helpful discussions related to NEST. EXO-200 is supported by DOE and NSF in the United States, NSERC in Canada, SNF in Switzerland, IBS in Korea, RFBR (18-02-00550) in Russia, DFG in Germany, and CAS and ISTCP in China. EXO-200 data analysis and simulation uses resources of the National Energy Research Scientific Computing Center (NERSC). We gratefully acknowledge the KARMEN collaboration for supplying the cosmic-ray veto detectors and the WIPP for their hospitality.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 American Physical Society.

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics


Dive into the research topics of 'Measurement of the scintillation and ionization response of liquid xenon at MeV energies in the EXO-200 experiment'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this