The earth is shining, even if it is not at all visible to the naked eye. The reason for this is geoneutrinos, which are produced in radioactive decay processes in the interior of the Earth. Every second, about one million of these elusive particles penetrate every square centimetre of our planet's surface.
The Borexino detector, located in the world's largest underground laboratory, the Laboratori Nazionali del Gran Sasso in Italy, is one of the few detectors in the world capable of observing these ghostly particles. Researchers have been using it to collect data on neutrinos since 2007, i.e. for over ten years. By 2019, they were able to register twice as many events as at the time of the last analysis in 2015 -- and reduce the uncertainty of the measurements from 27 to 18 percent, which is also due to new analysis methods.
Geoneutrinos - Traces - Decays - Earth - Portion
"Geoneutrinos are the only direct traces of the radioactive decays that occur inside the Earth, and which produce an as yet unknown portion of the energy driving all the dynamics of our planet," explains Livia Ludhova, one of the two current scientific coordinators of Borexino and head of the neutrino group at the Nuclear Physics Institute (IKP) at Forschungszentrum Jülich.
The researchers in the Borexino collaboration have extracted with an improved statistical significance the signal of geoneutrinos coming from the Earth's mantle which lies below the Earth crust by exploiting the well-known contribution from the Earth's uppermost mantle and crust -- the so called lithosphere.
Field - Activity - Movement - Plates - Mantle
The intense magnetic field, the unceasing volcanic activity, the movement of the tectonic plates, and mantle...
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