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An Investigation of Particle Identification by Energy Loss in Heterogeneous Silicon Detector Systems

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A method of generating energy loss distributions for particles of unit charge with a specific incident momentum through a thickness of silicon is developed. Monte Carlo methods are used to examine the significance of separation between kaon and pion energy loss distributions of the same incident momentum. Several detector configurations, including two homogeneous detectors each composed of 10 layers of 20 micron and 320 micron silicon, and a heterogeneous detector composed of 5 layers of 20 micron silicon followed by 5 layers of 320 micron silicon are simulated. The heterogeneous detector is inspired by the baseline concept of the innermost tracking system at the SiD. For the heterogeneous configuration, the maximum momentum range for a significance of separation of two (S=2) is found to be 700 MeV/c, while the maximum range for S=1 is found to be 940 MeV/c for the heterogeneous configuration. The effect of electronic noise on the kaon pion separation is briefly explored, and found to be small over most of the range of incident momentum for which there is a significant separation between kaons and pions.

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