A two-phase argon detector is generally suitable for the direct detection of weakly interacting massive particle (WIMP) dark matter owing to its high rejection power against electron recoil background events. However, ionization signal (S2) has not been effectively used for argon in current experiments because its basic properties and discrimination power from S2 signal in the low-energy region are not well known, as compared with xenon. The scope of this study is evaluation of S2 properties at a low-energy region of about 40 keVnr and its discrimination power between electron recoils and nuclear recoils based on results from a prototype LAr time projection chamber. The drift-field was varied from null to 3 kV/cm. The detection feasibility for low-mass WIMP with argon is also discussed.
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