Fondazione Sapienza – Tomassoni Chisesi Physics Prize - Seminars of the two winners for the year 2020

To honour the memory of Mrs. Caterina Tomassoni and Dr. Felice Pietro Chisesi, the prize is awarded to recognize and encourage outstanding achievements in physics. The prize will be assigned without regard for the nationality of the awardee or the geographical site at which the work was accomplished. Since 2013, the awards were unified into a single premium. A prize titled "Caterina Tomassoni and Felice Pietro Chisesi Prize" is presented each year on April, at Sapienza University of Rome. The prize consists of Euro 40,000, of an allowance for travel to the awarding ceremony, and of a certificate citing the contributions made by the recipient.


15.00: Dr. Karoline Schaeffner (Winner under 40 category)

Max-Planck-Institute for Physics (Werner Heisenberg Institut, Germany)

COSINUS - A unique perspective to shine light on the long-standing dark matter claim of DAMA/LIBRA

Dark matter is a main ingredient of the cosmos, its nature, despite of enormous progress in terrestrial direct dark matter searches, is still undiscovered. Most prominently, the results from DAMA/LIBRA, since more than two decades, create a controversial situation in the field of direct dark matter detection. Their latest results from DAMA phase 2 add further constraints since they imply that any interpretation of DAMA in terms of dark matter requires non-standard interactions of dark matter particles, or non-standard astrophysical assumptions, or both.

For a fully model-independent investigation of the nature of the DAMA/LIBRA claim, experiments which use the same material as DAMA/LIBRA are essential. Therefore, experiments applying sodium iodide (NaI) crystals are planned or are right on their way to solve the long-lasting discrepancy.

COSINUS will also use crystals of NaI, however not operates them as mere scintillation detectors, but as so-called cryogenic scintillating calorimeters operated at milli-Kelvin temperatures. COSINUS detectors provide a simultanous and independent measurement of both the temperature signal and the scintillation light signal caused by a particle interaction. Since the amount of produced light depends on the particle type (light quenching), this detection technique yields identification of the type of interacting particle on an event-by-event basis.

In this talk I will present results of our first generation prototype detectors and I will discussion future steps and prospects of COSINUS currently installing its own experimental facility at LNGS.

Ore 15.40: Prof. Jo Dunkley (Winner over 40 category)

Princeton University (USA )

The Millimeter Sky from the Atacama Cosmology Telescope


I will show new images of the Cosmic Microwave Background made by the Atacama Cosmology Telescope in Chile, capturing the universe as it was at 380,000 years after the Big Bang. I will describe how they are advancing our knowledge of cosmology, and how the new data let us weigh in on the concordance cosmological model known as ‘Lambda-Cold-Dark-Matter', the local expansion rate of the universe, and its spatial geometry.

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