NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
Peer reviewed Peer reviewed
Direct linkDirect link
ERIC Number: EJ1074848
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Sep
Pages: 8
Abstractor: As Provided
ISSN: ISSN-0031-921X
The Enigmatic Neutrino
Lincoln, Don; Miceli, Tia
Physics Teacher, v53 n6 p331-338 Sep 2015
Through a century of work, physicists have refined a model to describe all fundamental particles, the forces they share, and their interactions on a microscopic scale. This masterpiece of science is called the Standard Model. While this theory is incredibly powerful, we know of at least one particle that exhibits behaviors that are outside of its scope and remain unexplained. These particles are called neutrinos and they are the enigmatic ghosts of the quantum world. Interacting only via the weak nuclear force, literally billions of them pass through you undetected every second. While we understand that particular spooky behavior, we do not understand in any fundamental way how it is that neutrinos can literally change their identity, much as if a house cat could turn into a lion and then a tiger before transitioning back into a house cat again. Neutrinos have a long history of confounding researchers, making them uncertain about the law of conservation of energy in the microrealm and showing them that some particles have no mirror reflection, just to mention a couple of the neutrino's surprises. The neutrino continues to mystify physicists, and the study of their properties is a vibrant and ongoing area of research.
American Association of Physics Teachers. One Physics Ellipse, College Park, MD 20740. Tel: 301-209-3300; Fax: 301-209-0845; e-mail:; Web site:
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Grant or Contract Numbers: N/A