Zdenek Prudil

Justus Zorn (Germany)

justus.zorn @ mpi-hd.mpg.de

Camera development and analysis of the first gamma ray events with  the Cherenkov Telescope Array

The Cherenkov Telescope Array (CTA) is an initiative to build a new generation ground-based gamma-ray detector consisting of more than 100 telescopes located in the northern and southern hemisphere. The use of three different telescope sizes and its collection area exceeding one million square meters allows CTA improving the sensitivity by an order of magnitude in comparison to previous generation gamma ray detectors such as HESS (The High Energy Stereoscopic System). The purpose of the Small Size Telescopes (SSTs) is to extend the energy range of CTA to gamma-ray energies reaching 300 TeV. Thus, they will heavily improve the possibility of investigating cosmic ray PeVatron candidates, such as Westerlund I. Different camera and telescope techniques will be used for the SSTs and the Gamma-ray Cherenkov Telescope (GCT) will be one of them. A dual-mirror optical design and a curved focal plane is used in GCT to allow the use of a compact camera of 0.4 m diameter with a field of view of above 8 degrees. The aim of this PhD project is to be strongly involved in the development of cameras for GCT, testing and improving their performances and taking first on-sky Cherenkov data. Furthermore, the involvement in the upgrade of the HESS cameras which will improve the sensitivity of the HESS telescopes in the 100 TeV range allows not only to investigate Westerlund I as a possible PeVatron candidate with HESS but also to learn from the analysis of HESS upgrade data to develop a CTA analysis chain for PeVatron candidates.

Supervisor: Jim Hinton (MPIK)

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