Slope of the lateral density function of extensive air showers around the knee region as an indicator of shower age
Department of Physics, University of North Bengal, 734 013, Siliguri, West Bengal, India
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Accepted: 25 October 2016
Published online: 15 November 2016
Analyzing simulated extensive air shower (EAS) events generated with the Monte Carlo code CORSIKA, this paper critically studies the characteristics of lateral distribution of electrons in EAS around the knee energy region of the energy spectrum of primary cosmic rays. The study takes into account the issue of the lateral shower age parameter as an indicator of the stage of development of showers in the atmosphere. The correlation of the lateral shower age parameter with other EAS observables is examined, using simulated data in the context of its possible use in a multi-parameter study of EAS, with a view to obtaining information about the nature of the shower initiating primaries at sea level EAS experiments. It is shown that the observed slope of the lateral density function in the 3-dimensional plot, at least for the KASCADE data, supports the idea of a transition from light to heavy mass composition around the knee.
© Società Italiana di Fisica and Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg, 2016