CSI: Neutrinos cast no shadows

Categories: Intensity Frontier
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Published on: June 19, 2019
Xianguo Lu from University of Oxford explains why neutrinos leave no shadows at the March 2, 2018 Fermilab Wine & Cheese Seminar. Photo: Kevin McFarland

Scientists solve neutrino mysteries by watching them interact with detectors — specifically, with the atomic nuclei in the detector material. Most of the time, a neutrino does not even shake hands with a nucleus. But when it does, the lightweight, neutral particle can transform into a charged particle and knock things out of the nucleus as it escapes — leaving a crime scene behind. It is the job of scientists at Fermilab’s MINERvA experiment to reconstruct the crime scene and figure out what has happened during the interaction.

This article appeared on the Fermilab News site on February 4, 2019. It was written by Xianguo Lu.

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