Detecting System (Introduction)
What would the project participant be able to observe?
First, recall that before your computer displays any of possible plots, the following chain of events should occur.
- Primary cosmic rays coming from nobody knows where and accelerated by nobody knows who approach the Earth.
- Hitting the Earth's atmosphere, they give rise to a shower of secondary particles, something like a narrow bundle of tree branches (artist's views of these events are given on the introduction page of our site)
- We installed detectors of these secondary particles on the surface of the Earth. The information from them allows us to find out that a shower has arrived, to determine the exact time of its arrival and the incoming direction of the primary cosmic particle (shower axis), and to estimate the shower energy. It is clear that we will never see the primary cosmic particle, but we can learn a lot about it from the analysis of secondary particles
- To allow determining the absolute time of arrival (appearance) of signals from different detectors spaced very far apart, the satellite navigation system, GPS, is used (many of you could see it in motor cars). What we need to know is not the coordinate of the detector for it stays fixed at its place but rather the absolute time
- All these data should be entered and stored into the computer and then transferred to a single place (central server) and saved in a particular format.
- A computer program should be written for retrieval of these data from the server storage device, their analysis, statistical processing, and ultimately graphic representation of the results of the analysis in a form comprehensible for everybody. The section "Detecting System", which you are in now, deals with items 3 and 4 from the above list.