50th Anniversary of the Discovery of Atmospheric Neutrinos

January 31, 2016

On 15th December, IPPP hosted an event at the Royal Society in London to mark the 50th anniversary of the discovery of atmospheric neutrinos. The experimental collaboration from Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (India), Osaka City University (Japan) and Durham University (UK) reported the discovery of the first atmospheric neutrinos in the Kolar Gold Fields Experiment (C. V.Achar et al., Detection of muons produced by cosmic ray neutrinos deep underground, Phys. Lett. 18 (1965) 196). This discovery ultimately led to the discovery of atmospheric neutrino oscillations by the SuperKamiokande experiment which has been honoured this year by the Nobel prize in physics. A large fraction of the current and future international experimental neutrino programme is based on these results.
The afternoon program of scientific talks reviewed the impact that this had on neutrino and particle physics at large and discussed the present and future of the field with presentations from internationally recognised leaders of the field including this years Nobel laureate and Fundamental Physics Breakthrough Prize recipient Prof. Art McDonald and the leader of the Durham group in the Kolar Gold Fields experiment and former Royal Astronomer Prof. Sir Arnold Wolfendale.
To mark the event, a specially designed commemorative medal was presented to the four UK scientists involved in the discovery, Professor Arnold Wolfendale, Dr David Creed, Dr John Osborne and Dr Bryan Pattison. Medals were also presented to the representatives of the host institutions and the UK funding agency (represented by Professor Grahame Blair).
The image shows two of the Neutrino pioneers, Professor Arnold Wolfendale and Dr Bryan Pattison together with Mrs Pattison and Professor Silvia Pascoli.