DarkSide is a dark matter direct search experiment at Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso (LNGS). DarkSide is based on the detection of rare nuclear recoils possibly induced by hypothetical dark matter particles, which are supposed to be neutral, massive (m > 10 GeV) and weakly interactive (WIMP). The dark matter detector is a two-phase time projection chamber (TPC) filled with ultra-pure liquid argon. The TPC is placed inside a muon and a neutron active vetoes to suppress the background. Using argon as active target has many advantages, the key features are the strong discriminant power between nuclear and electron recoils, the spatial reconstruction and easy scalability to multi-tons size. At the moment DarkSide-50 is filled with ultra-pure argon, extracted from underground sources, and from April 2015 it is taking data in its final configuration. When combined with the preceding search with an atmospheric argon target, it is possible to set a 90% CL upper limit on the WIMP-nucleon spin-independent cross section of 2.0×10 -44 cm2 for a WIMP mass of 100 GeV/c2. The next phase of the experiment, DarkSide-20k, will be the construction of a new detector with an active mass of ∼ 20 tons.
Bottino, B., Aalseth, C.E., Acconcia, G., Acerbi, F., Agnes, P., Agostino, L., et al. (2017). The DarkSide experiment. IL NUOVO CIMENTO C, 40(1) [10.1393/ncc/i2017-17052-3].