Feeds

Neutrinos from another galaxy hit ice with black-hole force

IceCube detector turns up energetic surprise

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

Top three mobile application threats

If they're neutrinos – the scientists are being cautious about that, not yet having the six-sigma certainty that particle physics likes – they're rather exciting excited ones: two neutrinos believed detected at the IceCube detector in Antarctica have huge energy and probably came from outside our galaxy.

The energy claimed for the neutrinos is more than a petaelectronvolt, which according to Nature's post about the observation is more than 100 million times the energy of neutrinos emitted by supernovae.

The neutrinos were first observed in 2012, but analysis of their characteristics has only now been completed and announced.

As Phil Plait explains in Bad Astronomy, a petaelectronvolt neutrino is packing quite a punch: a thousand trillion times the energy of a visible photon (I'll trust his calculation).

IceCube detects neutrinos from the Cherenkov radiation emitted if they collide with the ice atoms. Completed in 2010, it consists of 86 detectors up to 2,450 meters below the surface, in the ice below the Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station.

The detectors surround a huge amount of ice – IceCube is a kilometre on each side – so as to catch the rare interactions between neutrinos and normal matter.

Sensor descends down a hole in the ice as part of the final season of IceCube. Credit: NSF/B Gudbjartsson

IceCube sensor installation

While there's an outside chance that the neutrinos might be produced by high-energy atmospheric cosmic ray interactions, the IceCube collaborators think it's more likely that they're part of the output of a very energetic astronomical phenomenon: possibly from the same source as gamma-ray bursts, or jets emerging from black holes. ®

3 Big data security analytics techniques

More from The Register

next story
Red-faced LOHAN team 'fesses up in blown SPEARS fuse fiasco
Standing in the corner, big pointy 'D' hats
KILLER SPONGES menacing California coastline
Surfers are safe, crustaceans less so
Opportunity selfie: Martian winds have given the spunky ol' rover a spring cleaning
Power levels up 70 per cent as the rover keeps on truckin'
Liftoff! SpaceX Falcon 9 lifts Dragon on third resupply mission to ISS
SpaceX snaps smartly into one-second launch window
KILLER ROBOTS, DNA TAMPERING and PEEPING CYBORGS: the future looks bright!
Americans optimistic about technology despite being afraid of EVERYTHING
Discovery time for 200m WONDER MATERIALS shaved from 4 MILLENNIA... to 4 years
Alloy, Alloy: Boffins in speed-classification breakthrough
Elon Musk's LEAKY THRUSTER gas stalls Space Station supply run
Helium seeps from Falcon 9 first stage, delays new legs for NASA robonaut
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Top three mobile application threats
Learn about three of the top mobile application security threats facing businesses today and recommendations on how to mitigate the risk.
Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.