The Cosmic Ray Electron Synchrotron Telescope (CREST) high-altitude balloon experiment is a pathfinding effort to detect for the first time multi-TeV cosmic-ray electrons. Such would be the markers of nearby cosmic accelerators, as energetic electrons from distant Galactic sources are expected to be depleted by radiative losses during interstellar transport. Electrons will be detected indirectly by the characteristic signature of their geomagnetic synchrotron losses, in the form of a burst of coaligned x-ray photons intersecting the plane of the instrument. Since the primary electron itself need not traverse the payload, an effective detection area is achieved that is several times the nominal 6.4 m2 instrument. The payload is composed of an array of 1024 BaF2 crystals surrounded by a set of veto scintillator detectors. A long-duration balloon flight in Antarctica is planned for the 2011-12 season.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Atomic and Molecular Physics, and Optics
- Nuclear and High Energy Physics