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Gargamelle was a giant bubble chamber detector at CERN, designed mostly for the detection of neutrinos. Built in France, with a diameter of nearly 2 meters and 4.8 meters in length, Gargamelle held nearly 12 cubic meters of freon (CF3Br). It operated from 1970 to 1978 with a neutrino beam from the CERN Proton Synchrotron. It was used to make one of the most important discoveries ever made at CERN: the experimental observation of the weak neutral currents in 1973,[1] shortly after their theoretical prediction.

For the experiment approximately 83,000 neutrino events were analysed, and 102 neutral current events observed. The signature of a neutral current event was an isolated vertex from which only hadrons were produced.

The name derives from the giantess Gargamelle in the works of François Rabelais; she was Gargantua's mother.


^ http://public.web.cern.ch/public/en/About/History73-en.html

The discovery of the weak neutral currents, CERN Courier
Experimental Study of the High-energy Reactions Anti-muon-neutrino e → Antu-muon-neutrino e-, Anti-muon-neutrino N → mu + X in the Gargamelle Bubble Chamber. (In French) Farhad Rahimi (Strasbourg, CRN). CRN-HE-84-13, Dec 1982.
The road to unification - Gargamelle and the discovery of Weak Neutral Currents

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