Skip to main content
Open Access Publications from the University of California

Determination of muon momentum in the MicroBooNE LArTPC using an improved model of multiple Coulomb scattering


We discuss a technique for measuring a charged particle's momentum by means of multiple Coulomb scattering (MCS) in the MicroBooNE liquid argon time projection chamber (LArTPC). This method does not require the full particle ionization track to be contained inside of the detector volume as other track momentum reconstruction methods do (range-based momentum reconstruction and calorimetric momentum reconstruction). We motivate use of this technique, describe a tuning of the underlying phenomenological formula, quantify its performance on fully contained beam-neutrino-induced muon tracks both in simulation and in data, and quantify its performance on exiting muon tracks in simulation. Using simulation, we have shown that the standard Highland formula should be re-tuned specifically for scattering in liquid argon, which significantly improves the bias and resolution of the momentum measurement. With the tuned formula, we find agreement between data and simulation for contained tracks, with a small bias in the momentum reconstruction and with resolutions that vary as a function of track length, improving from about 10% for the shortest (one meter long) tracks to 5% for longer (several meter) tracks. For simulated exiting muons with at least one meter of track contained, we find a similarly small bias, and a resolution which is less than 15% for muons with momentum below 2 GeV/c. Above 2 GeV/c, results are given as a first estimate of the MCS momentum measurement capabilities of MicroBooNE for high momentum exiting tracks.

Main Content
For improved accessibility of PDF content, download the file to your device.
Current View