JINR scientist won student research paper competition

News, 03 July 2023

An engineer of the DLNP Scientific and Experimental Department of Elementary Particle Physics Anna Stepanova won R. V. Khokhlov Competition of Student Research Papers of the MSU Faculty of Physics. The diploma of I degree was awarded to a graduate of the Dubna Department of Elementary Particle Physics based on the results of the Master’s thesis defence.

For many years two Dubna MSU Departments of Elementary Particle Physics (headed by RAS Academician Victor Matveev) and Fundamental Nuclear Interactions (headed by RAS Academician Grigory Trubnikov) have been successfully training specialists for work at JINR and other scientific centres, including in the Institute’s Member States.

The subject of scientific works reflects the diversity of the JINR research fields. In particular, the research work by Anna Stepanova called “Calculation of the accuracy of the neutrino oscillation parameters in long-baseline accelerator neutrino experiments” is dedicated to neutrino physics, one of the most interesting and promising directions of modern particle physics.

The work presents a universal shell created within the software of GNA (Global Neutrino Analysis) for modeling neutrino energy spectra at far detectors in long-baseline accelerator neutrino experiments. It was also used to assess sensitivity to oscillation parameters, such as hierarchy of neutrino mass and combined parity phase. They are still unknown and are the goal of measurements conducted by operating and future experiments.

Results of the operating experiments of this type NOvA and T2K, as well as of the future DUNE Experiment are demonstrated. DUNE is expected to collect big statistics of neutrino interactions, which will allow defining the parameters of neutrino oscillations with unprecedented accuracy.

Another part of the Master’s thesis included the development of the method for predicting the background of muon neutrinos in the mode of disappearing muon antineutrinos using the concept DUNE-PRISM (Precision Reaction-Independent Spectrum Measurement) in the software of the DUNE Experiment. The prediction of this largest background made by Anna allows making the neutrino oscillation data analysis independent from Monte Carlo.

The Competition named after Rem Victorovich Khokhlov is held annually for about 300 graduates of the MSU Faculty of Physics. It consists of several stages, which include the selection of the best scientific papers at the departments, and two rounds of the competition with the diploma/defence of the work in the final with a representative jury.

Anna performed her work that became the basis of her Master’s thesis at the DLNP Scientific and Experimental Department of Elementary Particle Physics under the guidance of Doctor of Physics and Mathematics, Prof. Alexander Olshevsky and a scientific consultant Candidate of Physics and Mathematics Liudmila Kolupaeva. For the achievements of the student Alexander Olshevsky and Liudmila Kolupaeva were awarded a commendation by the order of the Dean of the MSU Faculty of Physics.

We congratulate the laureate and her mentors on receiving this prestigious prize and wish them new bright victories and scientific achievements!