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HEP - ASTRO SEMINAR | Using Kaons to Unlock the Secrets of the Neutrino

Monday, February 2, 2015
5:00 AM
335 West Hall

More than 80 years after its proposed existence, the neutrino remains largely mysterious and elusive. Despite this fact, we are closing in on answers to some of the big questions surrounding the "little neutral one". After an introduction to the neutrino and neutrino mass, I will discuss two of the most important open questions in particle physics and cosmology today: (1) How many neutrinos are there? and (2) Is there a difference between matter neutrinos and antimatter neutrinos?

When a charged-kaon decays at rest, it usually produces a monoenergetic muon neutrino. Recently, this unique neutrino has been identified as an important tool in helping to eventually answer these big questions. I will discuss the "kaon decay-at-rest" concept for neutrino physics and present a set of experiments that will be able to perform the relevant measurements in the next few years.