Solar neutrinos and flavor Physics

By the 1960s physicists thought they had a pretty good understanding of the nuclear reactions that caused the sun to shine. One of the many predictions of their model is the number of neutrinos emitted by the sun.

A scientific model is only as good as its the experimental verification of its predictions, so the next step was to actually count these solar neutrinos. Of course, our readers already know that neutrinos are very weakly interacting and this makes them very hard to detect.

A nice, nontechnical explanation of the solar neutrino problem. I especially like the way Flip tells us where the simple explanation is misleading. So if you are curious about how we know neutrinos oscillate between three different states, enjoy!

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