Directional Sensitivity in Light-Mass Dark Matter Searches with Single-Electron-Resolution Ionization Detectors

Phys Rev Lett. 2018 Mar 16;120(11):111301. doi: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.120.111301.


We propose a method using solid state detectors with directional sensitivity to dark matter interactions to detect low-mass weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPs) originating from galactic sources. In spite of a large body of literature for high-mass WIMP detectors with directional sensitivity, no available technique exists to cover WIMPs in the mass range <1 GeV/c^{2}. We argue that single-electron-resolution semiconductor detectors allow for directional sensitivity once properly calibrated. We examine the commonly used semiconductor material response to these low-mass WIMP interactions.