Space Observatories for the Highest Energy Cosmic Particles: POEMMA & EUSO-SPB

  • Jan. 11, 2023, 4:00 pm US/Central
  • Angela V Olinto, University of Chicago
  • Chris Stoughton
  • Video

What are the mysterious sources of the most energetic particles ever observed? What astrophysical sources produce very energetic neutrinos? How do particles interact at extreme energies? Building on the progress achieved by the ground-based observations we are developing space and sub-orbital missions to answer these questions. The Extreme Universe Space Observatory (EUSO) on a super pressure balloon (SPB) is designed to detect ultra-high energy cosmic rays (UHECRs) from above. EUSO-SPB1 flew in 2017 with a fluorescence telescope. Buit to observe both fluorescence and Cherenkov from UHECRs and neutrinos, EUSO-SPB2 is on its way to Wanaka, New Zealand for launch in April 2023. These sub-orbital missions lead to POEMMA (the Probe Of Extreme Multi-Messenger Astrophysics) a space mission designed to discover the sources of UHECRs and to observe neutrinos above tens of PeV from energetic transient events. POEMMA will open new Multi-Messenger windows onto the most energetic events in the Universe, enabling the study of new astrophysics and particle physics at these extreme energies.