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DEPARTMENT COLLOQUIUM | UCN-tau - Measuring the Neutron Lifetime with Trapped Ultra Cold Neutrons

Wednesday, September 16, 2015
12:00 AM
340 West Hall

Susan J. Seestrom is the Associate Director of the Experimental Physical Sciences for the Los Alamos National Laboratory.

The lifetime to the free neutron is an important fundamental quantity whose value has implications for Big Bang Nucleosynthesis. In combination with precision measurement of the neutron beta asymmetry it can lead to searches for physics beyond the Standard Model of particle physics. At present there is significant disagreement between different measurements of the lifetime. I will discuss the work of the UCNtau collaboration aimed an improved measurement of the neutron lifetime with stored Ultra Cold Neutrons  (UCN) at the Los Alamos Neutron Science Center. We have built a large volume magneto-gravitational trapped designed to eliminate a number of potential systematic effects in previous measurements using stored UCN. I will present our recent results and plans to further develop our technique to make a measurement at sub-1 second accuracy.