A cosmic ray observatory

 
Published: Thursday 30 September 1999

Work has started on the Pierre Auger Southern Observatory in Argentina. This observatory, when completed in 2003, will be the world's largest cosmic ray observatory, with 1,600 detectors spread over 3,000 sq km. The detectors consist of water tanks fitted with photo-multipliers that detect the light given out by water when the high-speed cosmic ray particles pass through it. This detector will be able to measure the energy, direction and mass of the cosmic rays more accurately than has been hitherto possible. The project includes 53 institutions from 19 countries ( CERN Courier , Vol 39, No 5).

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