Measurement of single pi(0) production by coherent neutral-current nu Fe interactions in the MINOS Near Detector

P. Adamson
I. Anghel
A. Aurisano
G. Barr
M. Bishai
A. Blake
G. J. Bock
D. Bogert
S. V. Cao
T. J. Carroll
C. M. Castromonte
R. Chen
D. Cherdack
S. Childress
J. A. B. Coelho
L. Corwin
D. Cronin-Hennessy
J. K. de Jong
S. De Rijck
A. V. Devan, William & Mary
N. E. Devenish
Michael A. Kordosky, William & Mary
Jeffrey K. Nelson, William & Mary
A. Radovic, William & Mary
Patricia Vahle, William & Mary

Abstract

Forward single pi(0) production by coherent neutral-current interactions, vA - > vA pi(0), is investigated using a 2.8 x 10(20) protons-on-target exposure of the MINOS Near Detector. For single-shower topologies, the event distribution in production angle exhibits a clear excess above the estimated background at very forward angles for visible energy in the range 1-8 GeV. Cross sections are obtained for the detector medium comprised of 80% iron and 20% carbon nuclei with (A) = 48, the highest- < A > target used to date in the study of this coherent reaction. The total cross section for coherent neutral-current single pi(0) production initiated by the v(mu) flux of the NuMI low-energy beam with mean (mode) E-v of 4.9 GeV (3.0 GeV), is 77.6 +/- 5.0 (stat)(-) (+15.0)(16.8) (syst) x 10(-40) cm(2) pernucleus. The results are in good agreement with predictions of the Berger-Sehgal model.