Date Awarded


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (Ph.D.)




Michael Kordosky

Committee Member

Jeffrey Nelson

Committee Member

David Armstrong

Committee Member

Christopher Monahan

Committee Member

Craig Group


Long baseline neutrino oscillation experiments rely on the flux from accelerator-based neutrino beams. As experimental neutrino physics moves to the next generation of experiments a precise characterization of the neutrino flux on a given experiment becomes crucial to the goals of the experiments: to precisely determine the neutrino oscillation parameters.This work takes advantage of neutrino-electron scattering processes for their precisely predicted cross section. The observed number of scattering events can be used as a benchmark to constrain the neutrino flux. A measurement was made of the energy spectrum of neutrino-electron elastic scattering (νe-→νe-), using data from the antineutrino-enhanced run period of the NuMI beam line with an energy peak at 6 GeV. These new data were combined with previous measurements of neutrino-electron elastic scattering and inverse muon decay (ν_μ e- → μ-ν_e). A Bayesian probability technique was applied to constrain the multi-simulation prediction of the neutrino flux. A constraint was set on the normalization and uncertainty of the NuMI neutrino flux at the MINERvA detector. The fractional uncertainty on the integrated neutrino flux was reduced from 7.6\% to 3.3\% for the muon neutrino beam and from 7.8\% to 4.7\% for the muon antineutrino beam. The reduced flux uncertainty will improve the precision of \minerva cross sections measurements. Additionally, the technique demonstrated in this work can be applied to other accelerator-based neutrino experiments as tool to characterize the neutrino flux.




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