On the efficiency of primary cosmic ray composition evaluation using lateral distributions of air shower electromagnetic component

Research paper by Roman Raikin, Tatyana Serebryakova, Nikolay Volkov, Anatoly Lagutin

Indexed on: 20 Dec '18Published on: 20 Dec '18Published in: arXiv - Astrophysics - High Energy Astrophysical Phenomena


New analysis of simulations results for lateral distributions (LD) of electrons, muons and charged particles in extensive air showers generated by $10^{15}-10^{19}$~eV cosmic rays has been made with respect to the scaling formalism for LD and air shower universality paradigm. It is found that lateral distributions of electrons and muons, when considered separately, are well described by one-parametric scaling functions, while for the charged particles mixture distributions the scaling description is not accurate in radial distance range where electrons and muons give a comparable contribution to the local particle densities. The use of scaling formalism enables enhancing the electron/muon separation capabilities and, when combined with theoretically motivated air shower universality concept, provides robust mass composition estimates. The proposed approach could be implemented for the present and future (multi-) hybrid air shower observations, especially in realizing the potential of Auger and Telescope Array observatories upgrades, as well as for re-analysis and cross-calibration of the data collected from different air shower arrays in a broad primary energy range.