Neutrinos ... and clouds ...

15 Jun 2010

Meanwhile, at June 14th we have two interesting posts. The first one is on the topic of aeroplanes accidentally making holes in clouds and causing rain or snow to fall. It may happen more often than realised.

The second post by Nigel Calder is about neutrinos. Billions of them are passing through your body right at this very moment, he says, and with no electric charge and very little mass, neutrinos are the most penetrating of the commonplace particles in the universe - and difficult to detect. In fact, experiments to find them are very expensive and really big affairs - and require patience. At the 'Neutrino 2010' meeting in Athens scientists are saying they are 95 per cent sure there is a greater contrast between different kinds of anti-neutrinos than between different kinds of neutrinos - following an experiment wherein a beam of muon neutrinos travels below the ground for 735km from Fermilab in Illinois to detectors deep in a mine in Minnesota. On the way some of the neutrinos change - but the real story derives from the fact these neutrino experiments are taking place because of a failure to detect the expected number of neutrinos from solar nucleur reactions. Have they stopped to think the Sun may not be a nucleur reactor?