Mineral Detection of Dark Matter and Neutrinos


IFPU & online
October 17-21, 2022


Dark matter (DM) and neutrino interactions with nuclei can leave signatures in ancient minerals. Unlike conventional experiments designed to detect such interactions within increasingly large instrumented volumes of target material over several years of exposure time, mineral detectors leverage the O(1) Gyr age of rocks buried several km within the Earth’s crust. The nuclear recoils associated with DM and neutrino interactions can leave traces of damage tracks which are retained over geological timescales. Even with a small amount of target material, mineral detectors are thus sensitive to rare events such as DM scattering off nuclei or neutrinos produced in galactic core collapse supernovae. In addition, mineral detectors can probe the evolution of such signals over timescales not accessible by conventional experiments. The aim of this meeting is to bring together astroparticle theorists who have been making the scientific case for mineral detectors and experimentalists who have initiated preliminary studies of their feasibility. As mineral detectors incorporate various aspects of geology, materials science and astroparticle physics, this meeting is envisioned to bring together a diverse group with expertise encompassing these fields.

Reference webpage: to appear soon.

Scientific organizers:

  • Sebastian Baum (Stanford University)
  • Thomas D. P. Edwards (Stockholm University)
  • Patrick Stengel (SISSA and IFPU)