Building the Brookhaven (Homestake Gold Mine) Solar Neutrino Detector
April 2, 2012 - 11:00am
Marcus Nano Conference Room 1116
A neutrino detector, capable of detecting the neutrinos from the Sun’s fusion cycle, was strongly requested by the Theorists working on the Solar Model in the early 1960’s. The Cl37 → Ar37 detector scheme used by Davis and Harmer at the Savannah River Experiment in the 1950’s was suggested as the basis for a scaled up Solar Neutrino Detector. The details of the design and engineering of this scale up from “Laboratory” to “Production” one mile underground at the Homestake Gold Mine in Lead, South Dakota, are discussed. The result of the experiment, that only one third of the predicted number was detected, had unexpected consequences on the nature of neutrinos and on their theory.
The Principal Scientist on this project, Raymond Davis, Jr., won the 2002 Nobel Prize in Physics.