2014 WSU Abstract: Ionic Solutions and Muons

The effect of ionic solutions and their concentrations on the arrival rate of muons

Kyle Duffey, Sharon Zeng
This experiment was conducted to investigate the effect of small electromagnetic forces like the ones in ionic solutions could produce a noticeable effect on muon flux. To study this, detectors were placed above and below a cooler which held various solutions such as NaCl and CaCl2. Water, corn oil, and an empty cooler were also used as bases for comparison. Due to time restraints, only one trial was conducted for each variable. While all liquids had lower flux rates than the empty cooler, CaCl2 and corn oil did not produce the expected results. Muon flux when the cooler was filled with NaCl was lower than when the cooler was filled with water, and decreased when the concentration of the solution increased. Although it was not statistically significant, muon flux increased when molarity of CaCl2 increased. Corn oil produced an average muon flux that was lower than both water and NaCl, which may be due to corn oil's high viscosity. Overall, the experiment produced promising results but did not lead to a concrete conclusion.