Friday, April 20, 2012

As of Now - Astronomers Have No Idea What Causes Cosmic Rays

Up until a short while ago, astronomers were confident they had a handle on where cosmic rays come from.

Cosmic Rays generate ultra-powerful particles. So powerful in fact that nothing on Earth or anywhere in the Universe can generate anything close let alone as powerful as cosmic ray particles.

 Scientists thought thought that cosmic rays were created in powerful gamma-ray bursts - but more resent experimental results have proved this idea to be false.

 Data from the IceCube Neutrino Observatory - located in Antarctica - has been searching for the illusive neutrino but has failed to observe a single occurrence - despite monitoring hundreds of gamma-ray bursts.

Now this presents itself as a fairly disturbing result. The neutrino has long been considered a part of the cosmic ray along with many other particles. So if you wanted to find where a cosmic ray originated you only had to look in the direction that the particle came from. We have detected cosmic rays for quite some time, but no neutrino - making finding the source of cosmic rays impossible!

 To say the least, scientists are "disappointed" in this result. However, now that they have discovered that cosmic rays are a non starter, another source needs to be found. The only other source that is energetic enough to generate neutrinos is the super massive black holes at the center of every galaxy including the Milky Way. Scientists do not know as of yet if these black-holes are capable or do emit neutrinos. The mystery really is heating up. Check out neutrinos at the Wiki site here


Jon said...

opervel redndSee, now I would think it would be pretty obvious where Cosmic Rays come from. If the Sun's Rays come from the Sun, then Cosmic Rays come from a "Cosmic"...

Beam Me Up said...

Brilliant! And so Obvious! To think the answer is just sitting there right in front of them! I see a Nobel in your future sir...

kallamis said...

The sun does produce very low level cosmic rays in solar flares, but these aren't what they are looking at, nor are they nearly as powerful. Plus solar winds also have an effect on cosmic rays in slowing them down i believe, or something like that.
Just a concept, but it is possible that they are simply a force of the universe created during the big bang.
If you subscribe to the dual bang theory, (a whole other can of worms) I believe that would add some credence to the theory that they began shortly after the bangs, or possibly even at the moment between the bangs.
Was thinking maybe that if it did happen that way and with an end to an expanding universe, then they could actually be rebounding of the edges, and the matter in between in instances such as earths magnetic field which does repel much of a cosmic ray. They would become naturally untraceable over time.
You know what, Galactus is a force of the universe, blame him, lol. Sorry, couldn't resist.