The Pierre Auger Observatory Operating Funds Request

Project: Research project

Project Details


Cosmic rays are highly energetic sub-atomic particles from space that travel at velocities near the speed of light. The origin and acceleration mechanism for ultra-high energy cosmic rays, which likely come from extreme astrophysical phenomena outside our galaxy, are currently unknown. The Pierre Auger Observatory is the largest cosmic ray detector ever operated, with an instrumented area of more than 3000 square kilometers. Built in Malargue, Argentina by an international collaboration, the Pierre Auger Observatory was designed to study the origin and interactions of the highest energy particles in the Universe. The Observatory has been operating since 2008. This award provides partial funding for continued operations. The Observatory will continue to be an important venue for the training of students and postdocs and will promote public outreach initiatives through its Visitor Center. The public release of online data for school projects around the world will be expanded by implementing new tools for easy visualization and analysis.

The Pierre Auger Observatory measures the energy spectrum, composition, and arrival direction of ultra-high energy cosmic rays. More than 100,000 events have been detected with energies above 3x10^18 eV. Over the course of this award, additional measurements, upgraded detectors, larger statistics, and improved data analysis methods will further advance our understanding of cosmic ray physics.

Effective start/end date9/1/152/28/22


  • National Science Foundation: $744,099.00


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