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Cosmic ray observations from Livingston Island

J. J. Blanco, J. I. García-Tejedor, Ó. García-Población, S. Ayuso, A. López-Comazzi, I. Vrublevskyy, M. Prieto, A. L. Morozova

ORCA, from the Spanish name Observatorio de Rayos Cósmicos Antártico, is a cosmic ray detector devoted to the observation of secondary cosmic rays at Juan Carlos I Spanish Antarctic Base (62 ° 39' 46" S , 60 ° 23' 20" W , 12 m above sea level). ORCA was installed at the beginning of January 2019 after performing a latitudinal survey from Vigo (Spain) to Livingston Island aboard the Sarmiento de Gamboa Research Vessel. ORCA was in commissioning phase from January 2019 to March 2020, being in normal operation mode from March 2020. A vertical cutoff rigidity of 2.37 GV has been computed at ORCA location and during the first year of operation, i. e. from March 2020 to March 2021.

ORCA consists of three detectors stacked in a shared structure that maintains the relative distances between the detectors. A muon telescope (ORCM), a neutron monitor without any shielding around (ORCB) and a 3NM64 neutron monitor (ORCA). This configuration allows the measurement of neutron count rates at two different energy thresholds, muon count rate and muon incident directions.

Measurements recorded during the first year of operation and ORCA potential capabilities are shown in this work.

Cosmic rays; Neutron monitors; Muon telescopes; Sun-Earth relationship

Advances in Space Research
Volume 69, Number 9
2022 May

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Faculdade de Ciências da Universidade de Lisboa Universidade do Porto Faculdade de Ciências e Tecnologia da Universidade de Coimbra
Fundação para a Ciência e a Tecnologia COMPETE 2020 PORTUGAL 2020 União Europeia