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Wikenigma - an Encyclopedia of Unknowns Wikenigma - an Encyclopedia of the Unknown

Radioactive decay neutrino anomaly

Around yr2000, researchers at Purdue University, US, noticed that some radioactive sources - which should decay completely randomly - sometimes show peaks and troughs (i.e. cyclic variations) in the averaged radiation they produce over time. Subsequent tests carried out the Brookhaven National Laboratory and the Federal Physical and Technical Institute in Germany confirmed the phenomenon - which could not be explained by any conventional theory.

In 2006 a clue was provided when a fluctuation was logged during a large solar flare episode. Some theorists now suggest that the fluctuations might in some way be caused by neutrino emissions from the sun (which vary according to sun cycles).

Although the neutrino theory holds up as far as linking the observations with sun activity - there is no known physical mechanism by which they can affect radioactive decay.

What we're suggesting is that something that doesn't really interact with anything is changing something that can't be changed."

See : The strange case of solar flares and radioactive elements Stanford Report, August 23, 2010.

Further reading : The Net Advance of Physics at MIT

Also see Radioactive decayplugin-autotooltip__plain plugin-autotooltip_bigRadioactive decay


Radioactive decay is the process by which the nucleus of an unstable atom loses energy by emitting 'radiation' - which can be in the form of alpha particles (two neutrons + two protons), beta particles (high energy electrons or positrons), gamma rays (high energy photons), or conversion electrons.
and Neutrino massplugin-autotooltip__plain plugin-autotooltip_bigNeutrino mass

New research has found that the neutrino has a non-zero mass - but this requires a modification to the Standard Model of particle physics. The non-zero mass also means that neutrinos cannot travel at light-speed as photons do.

"Although neutrinos were long believed to be massless, it is now known that there are three discrete neutrino masses with different tiny values, but they don't correspond uniquely to the three flavors. A neutrino created with a specific flavor is in an ass…

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