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Charm production in the forward region: constraints on the small-x gluon and backgrounds for neutrino astronomy

Gauld, Rhorry; Rojo, Juan; Rottoli, Luca; Talbert, Jim

Charm production in the forward region: constraints on the small-x gluon and backgrounds for neutrino astronomy Thumbnail


Authors

Rhorry Gauld

Juan Rojo

Luca Rottoli

Jim Talbert



Abstract

The recent observation by the IceCube experiment of cosmic neutrinos at energies up to a few PeV heralds the beginning of neutrino astronomy. At such high energies, the ‘conventional’ neutrino flux is suppressed and the ‘prompt’ component from charm meson decays is expected to become the dominant background to astrophysical neutrinos. Charm production at high energies is however theoretically uncertain, both since the scale uncertainties of the NLO calculation are large, and also because it is directly sensitive to the poorly-known gluon PDF at small-x. In this work we provide detailed perturbative QCD predictions for charm and bottom production in the forward region, and validate them by comparing with recent data from the LHCb experiment at 7 TeV. Finding good agreement between data and theory, we use the LHCb measurements to constrain the small-x gluon PDF, achieving a substantial reduction in its uncertainties. Using these improved PDFs, we provide predictions for charm and bottom production at LHCb at 13 TeV, as well as for the ratio of cross-sections between 13 and 7 TeV. The same calculations are used to compute the energy distribution of neutrinos from charm decays in pA collisions, a key ingredient towards achieving a theoretically robust estimate of charm-induced backgrounds at neutrino telescopes.

Journal Article Type Article
Acceptance Date Oct 13, 2015
Online Publication Date Nov 30, 2015
Publication Date Nov 30, 2015
Deposit Date Apr 24, 2019
Publicly Available Date Apr 24, 2019
Journal Journal of High Energy Physics
Print ISSN 1126-6708
Publisher Scuola Internazionale Superiore di Studi Avanzati (SISSA)
Peer Reviewed Peer Reviewed
Volume 2015
Issue 11
Article Number 9
DOI https://doi.org/10.1007/jhep11%282015%29009
Public URL https://durham-repository.worktribe.com/output/1303323

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Publisher Licence URL
http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/

Copyright Statement
This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC-BY 4.0), which permits any use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author(s) and source are credited.






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