Philosophical Society of Washington

Neutrinos and their Role in Astrophysics

Bob Ellsworth
George Mason University

2160th Meeting Abstract
Friday, March 21, 2003 at 8:15 PM


A long-standing problem in astrophysics has been the apparent disagreement between a model of energy production in the sun and experimental data on the flux and energy spectrum of neutrinos at the earth. In the last several years, the results from three neutrino experiments have, together, provided strong evidence of a resolution of the problem. The key to the solution has been the determination that neutrinos are not massless, as previously thought. The disagreement is resolved through the phenomenon of quantum-mechanical oscillations of neutrino type. This presentation will describe the basic features of the particles and processes involved in the solution of the problem.

About the Author:

Robert Ellsworth is a Professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at George Mason University. He received his PhD in 1966 from the University of Rochester. His research interests are in experimental particle and cosmic-ray physics. Since the early 1990's he has been a collaborator on the SuperKamiokande neutrino experiment.

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