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Seminar: Wednesday, October 29, 2008 at 3:30pm

The BESS-Polar Program and the Search for Antimatter
Thomas Hams
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

The Balloon-borne Experiment with a Superconducting Spectrometer (BESS) program is searching for antimatter in the galactic cosmic radiation by precisely measuring the elemental and isotopic composition of the light cosmic ray component. The experiment is a highly successful US-Japanese collaboration and over the past 15 years, the BESS payload has had eight low geomagnetic cutoff, northern latitude flights and two long duration balloon flights from Antarctica. The most recent flight of the BESS-Polar experiment was a long-duration Antarctica flight, which occurred between December 2007 and January 2008. This flight yielded 24.5 days of observation time at a time of low solar activity (solar minimum). We will review the BESS program and report the results of the antiproton and proton spectra measured in the BESS-Polar I flight, the search for cosmic antinuclei, and the status of the BESS-Polar II analysis.

Location: Physics Bldg., Room 401
Coffee: 3:15 p.m.