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Neutrinos Weighed by the World´s Most Precise Scale

The Karlsruhe Tritium Neutrino Experiment KATRIN Starts – Official Inauguration Colloquium on June 11.
Inside the large electrostatic spectrometer, the heart of the Karlsruhe Tritium Neutrino Experiment KATRIN.  (Photo: Michael Zacher)
Inside the large electrostatic spectrometer, the heart of the Karlsruhe Tritium Neutrino Experiment KATRIN. Its long-term data taking phase started on June 11, 2018. (© Michael Zacher)
Official inauguration of the experiment KATRIN (photo: Markus Breig, KIT)
Official inauguration of the experiment KATRIN (photo: Markus Breig, KIT)

What is the mass of neutrinos?  To answer one of the most fundamental and important open questions in modern particle physics and cosmology, the KATRIN Karlsruhe Tritium Neutrino Ex-periment was designed and built by an international collaboration at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) in southwest Germany. A special Inauguration Colloquium on June 11 marks the start of its long-term data taking phase.

The Karlsruhe Tritium Neutrino Experiment KATRIN now starts to weigh the mass of neutrinos. Following the electrostatic spectrometer and the detector unit, the tritium source was installed as the last of the large components of KATRIN. The ambitious and highly motivated team of physicists, engineers, and technicians is well-trained and looks forward to the challenges in determining the neutrino mass.

Germany’s Federal Minister of Research Anja Karliczek says: ”KATRIN is an experiment of superlatives and will complement the knowledge about our universe by a decisive piece of the puzzle. I congratulate the KIT and the research collaboration on the successful assembly of this complex experiment. Together with you, I look forward to the start of the measurement phase and the first research results. Such an important experiment on German territory strengthens Germany as a location of research.” With a share of around 75%, the Federal Ministry of Research was the biggest funding partner by far. It invested about 50 million euros in the building of KATRIN.

Full text: press release 069/2018

jho, 11.06.2018