In search of axions: The CAST experiment

George K. Fanourakis, S. Andriamonje, Arsov, S. Aune, D. Autiero, F. Avignone, K. Barth, A. Belov, B. Beltran, H. Brauninger, J. M. Carmona, S. Cebrian, E. Chesi, J. I. Collar, R. Creswick, T. Dafni, M. Davenport, T. Decker, L. Di Lella, C. EleftheriadisJ. Englhauser, G. Fanourakis, H. Farach, E. Ferrer, H. Fischer, J. Franz, P. Friedrich, T. Geralis, I. Giomataris, S. Gninenko, N. Goloubev, M. D. Hasinoff, F. H. Heinsius, R. Hill, D. H.H. Hoffmann, I. G. Irastorza, J. Jacoby, D. Kang, K. Koenigsmann, R. Kotthaus, M. Krcmar, K. Kousouris, M. Kuster, B. Lakic, C. Lasseur, A. Liolios, A. Ljubicic, G. Lutz, G. Luzon, D. W. Miller, A. Morales, J. Morales, M. Mutterer, A. Nikolaidis, A. Ortiz, T. Papaevangelou, M. Pivovaroff, A. Placci, G. Raffelt, J. Ruz, H. Riege, M. L. Sarsa, I. Savvidis, W. Serber, P. Serpico, Y. Semertzidis, R. Soufli, L. Stewart, K. Van Bibber, J. D. Vieira, J. Villar, L. Walckiers, K. Zachariadou, K. Zioutas

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution


The CERN Axion Solar Telescope (CAST) experiment uses a decommissioned LHC test magnet in conjunction with three different technology X-ray photon detectors and tracks the sun to look for the elusive axion. Axions or axion-like particles with a two-photon interaction can be produced in the Sun by the Primakoff process, according to the theory. In a laboratory magnetic field they can be transformed into X-rays with energies of a few keV. CAST has been running for about 6 months during 2003 and most of 2004. The first results from the analysis of the 2003 data are presented here. No signal above background was observed, implying an upper limit to the axion to photon coupling g αγγ < 1.16 × 10-10 GeV -1 at 95% CL for mα ≤ 0.02 eV. This limit is comparable to the limit from stellar energy loss arguments and considerably more restrictive than any previous experiment in this axion mass range.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Subtitle of host publication7th International Conference of the Hellenic Astronomical Society
Number of pages10
StatePublished - 2006
Externally publishedYes
Event7th International Conference of the Hellenic Astronomical Society - Lixourion, Kefallinia Island, Greece
Duration: Sep 8 2005Sep 11 2005

Publication series

NameAIP Conference Proceedings
ISSN (Print)0094-243X
ISSN (Electronic)1551-7616


Other7th International Conference of the Hellenic Astronomical Society
CityLixourion, Kefallinia Island


  • Axions
  • Dark matter
  • Micromegas
  • X-ray detection

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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