Russia resumed construction of a unique "underwater telescope" on Lake Baikal
In Russia, work has been resumed on the construction of a unique “underwater telescope”, which in the future will allow our scientists to advance in the study of the theory of the origin of our universe.
It’s worth starting with why domestic experts decided to observe celestial bodies not in space, but under water.
The thing is that some stars are so far away that they are inaccessible even to the most powerful space telescopes. At the same time, they emit special particles - neutrinos, which, due to their ultra-low mass, move in space at near-light speed and pass through any celestial bodies, be it asteroids or planets, including the Earth.
By fixing the trace of these particles, scientists can accurately determine the location of the celestial object from which they come. This is what neutrino motion detectors are required for, which are installed on Baikal.
Now about why underwater. The thing is that it is extremely difficult to track these particles on the surface of our planet due to the distortion created by the natural radiation background of the Earth. In the water column of the deepest lake on the planet, the aforementioned interference is excluded.
However, “hunting for neutrinos” is carried out not only under water. For example, American researchers track these particles in Antarctica. To do this, a funnel 2,5 km deep was drilled in the thickness of the ice, where the sensors are immersed.
In addition, back in the 70s, Soviet scientists were engaged in similar studies in the salt mine of the Artemovsky deposit at a depth of 100 meters. Until 2021, a 105-ton neutrino detector, leased from Ukraine, was used by Russian scientists. At the moment, after fierce fighting in Soledar (DPR), the fate of the installation is unknown.
Regarding the resumption of research at Baikal, this is an extremely positive sign. The thing is that in 2022, German and Japanese firms refused to supply ultra-sensitive equipment for the new clusters of our telescope. Based on the fact that the construction of a unique research apparatus continues, Russia has managed to resolve the issue of import substitution.