Introduction of Gadolinium into Super-Kamiokande and the Start of New Observations
The rare earth element gadolinium has recently been introduced into the Super-Kamiokande (SK) detector, starting a new period of observations. The addition of gadolinium improves SK’s ability to observe the sea of neutrinos, known as “supernova relic neutrinos”, produced by supernova explosions that have occurred since the beginning of the universe. In addition, gadolinium will improve SK’s ability to observe the burst of neutrinos from any supernovae occurring in our galaxy and will improve its other research topics, such as the discrimination of atmospheric neutrinos from antineutrinos and the observation of manmade neutrinos. This release explains the details of the recent gadolinium loading in SK.