After years of development work, the new Pixel Vertex Detector (PXD2) was successfully installed in the international Belle-II experiment at the SuperKEKB electron-positron accelerator in Japan. Concettina Sfienti's group at the Institute of Nuclear Physics was also involved in the design and construction. Under Mainz leadership, real-time monitoring of data quality was implemented and key sections of the software controlling the PXD2 were programmed. In addition, sensor modules were tested at MAMI for their radiation hardness.
The special feature of the PXD2 is that, due to its very compact design, it can deliver 50,000 high-resolution images per second at a distance of only 1.4 centimeters from the collision point. From this, the exact decay location of short-lived particles, especially B mesons, can be determined very accurately and the decay products can be detected with high precision. In combination with the high collision rate at SuperKEKB, fundamental phenomena such as CP violation can thus be studied in high detail - with the goal of understanding the imbalance between matter and antimatter in the universe!
The new detector is scheduled to start taking data in early 2024.
Read the full press release here.