The Case of the Missing Neutrinos: Results from SuperKamiokande
American Astronomical Society, HEAD meeting #4, #22.03; Bulletin of the American Astronomical Society, Vol. 31, p.723
Published in Apr 1999
Neutrinos are enigmatic particles that were invented in the 1930's and discovered in the 1950's. Some 40 years after their discovery, much mystery surrounds the properties of neutrinos. Neutrinos come in three types, or ``flavors," that describe the properties of their interactions. It has long been speculated that neutrinos may change flavor, so-called neutrinos oscillations, as they propagate through space. Data from the SuperKamiokande experiment, located under the Japanese Alps, has for the first time produced evidence of neutrino oscillations that is generally accepted. A brief background about neutrino oscillations will be given, followed by many details about the data from SuperKamiokande. A short discussion of possible implications of neutrino oscillations will close the talk.