Ultra radio-pure materials for Rare Events Physics
Istituto Nazionale di Fisica Nucleare (INFN)
Fundamental research in subnuclear, nuclear and astroparticle physics requires the use of cutting-edge technologies and instrumentation which, at their turn, are very often based on the use of special materials. The discovery of improved materials for radiation detectors and the implementation of their large scale production, has gained in recent years an increasing interest not only from scientific but also from technological and economic point of view. The experiments searching for a direct evidence of dark matter and those searching for the neutrinoless double beta decay (0υDBD) are among the most exciting challenges of the modern physics. The sensitivity of such experiments is practically driven by the background which depends substantially on the quality of the crystals used as detectors. The current work will make a review of scientific and technological aspects related to the crystal production for particle physics research. It is stressed the need of extremely low radioactive contamination and high chemical purity, especially when enriched isotopes are used for the synthesis of the final compound (usually in crystalline form) which will be the active part of the experiment. The presentation will give concrete examples taken from two relevant experiments in the field: the Cryogenic Underground Observatory for Rare Events (CUORE) and the Low-background Underground Cryogenic InstallationFor Elusive Rates (LUCIFER).