Surface Area vs. Rate of Shower Events

Christopher Coulter(Woodhaven High School) and Nathaniel Lee(Roeper Upper School)

Teacher Mentor: Mike Niedballa(Michigan Collegiate High School)

Research Mentor: Robert Harr(Wayne State University)

The purpose of this experiment was to determine the relationship between the rate of cosmic ray showers with varying surface area of detection. We used the 6600 CRMD equipment from QuarkNet to conduct the experiment. We placed detectors in a square configuration and varied the side length of the square to change the surface area of detection. The smaller area trials picked up small showers and larger showers, so the resulting data was the integral of the rate of showers with respect to area. This is why we had to take the negative derivative of the best fit line of the original result to find the actual rate of shower at a specific area. The ultimate results supported the idea that smaller showers are more common because the negative derivative showed an inverse relationship. In the future this experiment could be tested with a greater distance between detectors and run for longer periods of time to possibly determine the average surface area of cosmic ray showers. 



Cosmic Ray