The feasibility of the deployment and operation of a large
detector in the deep sea needs to be demonstrated. Scientists of other fields
have deployed acoustic
detectors connected to the shore and used them reliably for many years. We
intend to built a demonstrator which will prove the feasibility and
will allow us to estimate the cost of a large scale detector.
In order to ensure that the exercise is meaningful, we must only use
techniques that can be extrapolated to a km-scale detector.
0.5mm The ANTARES programme can be divided into 3 stages, which will be discussed in detail below:
For the completion of these stages, we have asked for the support of experts. We have started a collaboration with IFREMER and Centre d'Océanologie de Marseille (INSU) as well as CSTN, France Télécom Câbles, CTME...
More specifically, not only the know-how is requested, but also the availability of ships and submarines (IFREMER owned submarines: Cyana, Nautile and ROV 6000; dynamical positioning ships which are needed should be available).
The optical module, the data transmission, the trigger and the slow control of the experiment are under study. In general, quality assurance will be applied.
The geometrical arrangement of the array of optical modules needs to be studied in order to optimize the effective area of the detector, the angular resolution and the rejection against down-going muons.
Site studies including water transparency, optical background and bio-fouling measurements have already been started. All the tools for site tests are either completed or in construction and in this first phase of operation we have started to learn how to build strings of detectors, how to deploy and recover them, how to handle difficulties associated with deep sea operations.