Cherenkov telescope IceAct at the South Pole

01/02/2018
Imaging air Cherenkov telescope IceAct successfully installed at the South Pole Copyright: Devyn Rysewyk

After running a small 7-pixel telescope at the South Pole for two years, this January a 61-pixel imaging air Cherenkov telescope with a 12° field of view was successfully deployed (blue tube in the picture). Martin Rongen (RWTH Aachen University) and Devyn Rysevyk (Michigan State University) developed the telescope at the South Pole (picture from left to right). This SIPM based telescope demonstrator will aim for long-term measurements of light flashes from cosmic rays with a primary energy above 30 TeV during the long Antarctic winter. This will give us new insides into the durability of the technology and the environmental properties at the South Pole for optical observations.  In the future an array of small telescopes is imagined to measure the composition of cosmic rays together with IceTop and IceCube, and to veto cosmic ray induced background for astrophysical neutrino detection.