Neutrinoless double beta decay

The detection of the neutrinoless double beta decay would answer fundamental questions about the nature of the neutrino. The decay is possible only if the neutrino is a Majorana particle, and the half-life depends on its mass. One approach of the COBRA experiment is the use of pixelated CdTe detectors, like the Timepix detector, to search for such a decay. A pixel pitch in the order of 100 mum allows tracking inside the calorimeter, which can be used to identify particles and to reduce background. We are investigating the possibilities of pixelated CdTe sensors for a detector design for the detection of the neutrinoless double beta decay.

Simulated track of two electrons escaping from a neutrinoless double beta decay. The colour encodes the energy deposited by the electron along its path through the detector pixels.