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Physics Colloquium Series: Professor Mark Messier
(Physics Lecture Series) Indiana University, Department of Physics
“Next Questions for Neutrinos : Recent results from the NOvA Experiment”
The 2015 Nobel prize in physics was awarded for the discovery of neutrino oscillations and mass in 1998. That discovery spawned a world-wide effort to better understand neutrino properties using oscillations of neutrinos produced in the Sun, in the atmosphere, at reactors, and by accelerators. While much has been learned since then, several important questions remain: Which neutrino is heaviest? Do neutrino properties follow a pattern or respect any symmetries? Is the framework we use to understand neutrinos complete or is there more? Do neutrinos break the symmetry between matter and antimatter? The NOvA experiment was designed to address each of these remaining questions by sending a beam of neutrinos 810 km to a 14,000 ton detector located in northern Minnesota. In my talk, I will introduce neutrinos and the questions surrounding them, discuss the important factors that led to the design of the NOvA experiment and summarize the most recent neutrino and antineutrino measurements from the experiment.