Simulation of in-ice cosmic ray air shower induced particle cascades

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Citations (Scopus)
69 Downloads (Pure)


We present simulations of the development of high-energy cosmic-ray air showers penetrating high-Altitude ice layers that can be found at the polar regions. We use a combination of the corsika Monte Carlo code and the geant4 simulation toolkit, and focus on the particle cascade that develops in the ice to describe its most prominent features. We discuss the impact of the ice layer on the total number of particles in function of depth of the air shower, and we give a general parametrization of the charge distribution in the cascade front in function of Xmax of the cosmic ray air shower, which can be used for analytical and semianalytical calculations of the expected Askaryan radio emission of the in-ice particle cascade. We show that the core of the cosmic ray air shower dominates during the propagation in ice, therefore creating an in-ice particle cascade strongly resembling a neutrino-induced particle cascade. Finally, we present the results of simulations of the Askaryan radio emission of the in-ice particle cascade, showing that the emission is dominated by the shower core, and discuss the feasibility of detecting the plasma created by the particle cascade in the ice using RADAR echo techniques.

Original languageEnglish
Article number043023
Number of pages15
JournalPhysical Review D
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 24 Aug 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Flemish Foundation for Scientific Research (FWO-G007519N) and the European Research Council under the European Unions Horizon 2020 research and innovation program (No. 805486 - K. D. de Vries). We would like to thank D. Seckel, C. Glaser and S. Barwick for ongoing discussions about the presented work, as well as S. Prohira and T. Huege for their valuable feedback.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 American Physical Society.

Copyright 2022 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.


  • astro-ph.HE


Dive into the research topics of 'Simulation of in-ice cosmic ray air shower induced particle cascades'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this