Skip to comments.Missing piece found in particle puzzle: scientists...
Posted on 06/01/2010 4:08:50 PM PDT by TaraP
Research scientists announced on Monday they had identified the missing piece of a major puzzle involving the make-up of the universe by observing a neutrino particle change from one type to another. Science The CERN physics research center near Geneva, relaying the announcement from the Gran Sasso laboratory in central Italy, said the breakthrough was a major boost for its own LHC particle collider programme to unveil key secrets of the cosmos. According to physicists at Gran Sasso, after three years of monitoring multiple billions of muon neutrinos beamed to them through the earth from CERN 730 kms (456 miles) away, they had spotted one that had turned into a tau neutrino. Behind that scientific terminology lies the long-sought proof that the three varieties of neutrinos -- sub-atomic particles that with others form the universe's basic elements -- can switch appearance, like the chameleon lizard. The discovery is important, scientists say, because it helps explain why neutrinos arrive at earth from the sun in apparently far smaller numbers than they should under the Standard Model of physics that has held sway for some 80 years. The fact that neutrinos are now proven to switch identities -- as posited by two Moscow scientists in the late 1960s based on earlier work by a U.S. physicist -- suggests that other types of neutrinos could exist but slip detection. LIGHT ON DARK MATTER In its turn, specialists say, this could help shed light on what is the dark matter that makes up about a quarter of the universe alongside the some 5 percent that is observable and the remaining 70 percent invisible "dark energy." "This is really exciting because it shows that there are things beyond the Standard Model," said James Gillies, spokesman for CERN --
(Excerpt) Read more at reuters.com ...
the European Organization for Nuclear Research on the border between Switzerland and France. The search for concrete evidence of dark matter and of what it might be is part of the work of CERN’s LHC, or Large Hardon Collider, the world’s biggest scientific machine that began operation near full force at the end of March.
But the beaming of muon neutrinos to the Italian center is not part of the LHC experiment. The beam is directed south under the Alps from another, smaller, CERN particle accelerator CERN quoted Lucia Votano, director of the Gran Sasso laboratories near the town of L’Aquila 112 kms south of Rome that was hit by a devastating earthquake in April last year, as saying that its work had achieved its first goal. Scientists there were confident that the detection in the centre’s OPERA experiment of a tau neutrino would be followed by others showing that neutrinos can change, she said.
It’s good to see some news about the truly important subjects! (Grin!)
Scientific American’s June issue has some neat articles about time, neutrinos, superstrings, twistors, the general and special theories, quantum microphones and the fourth dimension in ten dimensions.
It was nice to read a SciAm issue that wasn’t filled with global warming crap and how evil the “deniers” are, although it had a bit of that rot.
I am still waiting for them to find my old drill chuck key. No luck yet.
Not sure what ping list this might go on, but it’s interesting.
If they wanted to find missing particles, they could have saved themselves some trouble by looking under my bed; there are plenty of missing particles in the dust bunnies there.
Usually scientists try to find missing stuff under the lamp post since it’s brighter there.
Up and down, top to bottom, the whole topic is charming, but strange.
Italy has found transgender particles. Muons mutating themselves into taus or just cross-dressing for fun.
JUst to keep this in perspective, it is estimated that by particle physicists that 50 trillion neutrinos pass through the human body every second.
There had to be one party pooper in there somewhere.
The beauty of quarks, leptons, muons and things.
I do think that you picked the appropriate moniker - before the event...heh. Have you changed?
Sometimes, there is a tendency toward Tau. But only when I interact with pizza.
It is not really news that neutrino oscillations occur. It was shown back in 2001, using a detector sensitive to all three flavors of neutrinos, that neutrino oscillations accounted for the problem of “missing” solar neutrinos. Apparently this is the first direct observation of the change.
Research scientists announced on Monday they had identified the missing piece of a major puzzle involving the make-up of the universe by observing a neutrino particle change from one type to another.
Great news. No how about solving the problem of, 'Missing Socks In The Dryer'.
To me that was always proof enough that parallel universes exist. And its composed entirely of Missing Socks.
Neutrino oscillation has been realized for more than a decade. Without looking it up, I know that Nobel Prize Hans Bethe did work showing this in his later years (I play bridge at times with his son, so I this happens to be on the tip of my fingers.)
This is not even a “surprise” to the world of physics. It will hardly get notice there, since it has been a given for so long.
Missing socks go to Tumbolia.
Did the observation cause the change?
That reminds me, I have to go check on my cat.