We describe the experimental setup and the results of RAuger, a small radio-antenna array, consisting of three fully autonomous and self-triggered radio-detection stations, installed close to the center of the Surface Detector (SD) of the Pierre Auger Observatory in Argentina. The setup has been designed for the detection of the electric field strength of air showers initiated by ultra-high energy cosmic rays, without using an auxiliary trigger from another detection system. Installed in December 2006, RAuger was terminated in May 2010 after 65 registered coincidences with the SD. The sky map in local angular coordinates (i.e., zenith and azimuth angles) of these events reveals a strong azimuthal asymmetry which is in agreement with a mechanism dominated by a geomagnetic emission process. The correlation between the electric field and the energy of the primary cosmic ray is presented for the first time, in an energy range covering two orders of magnitude between 0.1 EeV and 10 EeV. It is demonstrated that this setup is relatively more sensitive to inclined showers, with respect to the SD. In addition to these results, which underline the potential of the radio-detection technique, important information about the general behavior of self-triggering radio-detection systems has been obtained. In particular, we will discuss radio self-triggering under varying local electric-field conditions.
- Large detector systems for particle and astroparticle physics
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Mathematical Physics