Trillions of them are passing through your body in every second, yet you can't notice them. Even you are producing millions of then in every day. After the photon, they are the second most abundant particle in this universe, called neutrino. Knowing their nature is very difficult as they are extremely shy to interact. Till date 8 scientists have already bagged Nobel prizes for their research to bring out some features of them.
"But the fun has just began," said Prof. Naba K. Mondal. "New experiments revealing the nature of neutrinos can provide answers to the most fundamental questions like why our universe is only matter dominated, though we had equal amount of anti-matter during the birth (big bang) of this universe", he added during his evening lecture for the students attending school on nuclear astrophysics being held at Variable Energy Cyclotron Centre.
Photo: A slide from Prof. Mondal’s evening lecture, showing the plan of an underground laboratory and associated facilities at Pottipuram in Bodi West hills of Theni district of Tamil Nadu. The construction couldn’t be started as the local people has been made to believe by some people that neutrino is hazardous.
Nature journal identified few such pioneering experiments that are planned to be carried out in next decade to reveal the mysteries of neutrino. One such experimental facility will be the India-based Neutrino Observatory (INO), an underground laboratory at Bodi hill near Madurai. Although the scientists are ready with the 1st set of detectors ,but the laboratory which is to be built at end of a 2 km long tunnel under a mountain, couldn’t be ready as the local people has been made to believe by some people that neutrino is hazardous.
“Development of such experimental facility will not only help Indian scientists to carry out front ranking research in the exciting area of neutrino physics, but also boost Indian industry to develop cutting edge technology as INO requires massive 50 kilo ton magnet, 30000 particle detectors and sophisticated state of the art electronics”, said Prof. Mondal who was the spokesperson of INO and currently the Raja Ramanna Fellow at Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics.