I’ve been a fan of Richard Feynman in that he is one of the few mainstream scientists that actually insisted that theories be consistent with the data, but also because he seemed so capable of thinking a problem through. Recently, I’ve been giving thought to his method of diagramming nuclear reactions, and one aspect of those diagrams is that they’re all reversible, and so are the reactions they represent.
This got me thinking about the role that neutrinos often play in nuclear reactions. If you fuse four hydrogen nuclei together (protons) to create a helium atom, two of these have to become neutrons in the process. Anytime protons convert to neutrons or the opposite, neutrinos are involved. In these reactions they are given off. But Feynman also suggests that these reactions can be played backwards, and in that case you’d have to have neutrinos coming into the reaction not leaving. That lead me to think that neutrinos must be capable of causing a nuclear reactions that wouldn’t otherwise happen. At first I wanted to say neutrino catalyzed reactions, but that really wouldn’t be correct because in this case they are consumed.
Never the less, we’ve been going through a period of anomalous activity in the solar system, not only is the Earth heating up, but so is Mars and every other planet that we can measure the temperature. The Earth is not only heating up on the surface, but there is evidence that things deep below are in flux as well. The rate that the magnetic field is wandering has increased dramatically over the last hundred years. There was a year a couple of decades ago where we had a serious of deep Earthquakes around the globe that exceeded the statistical norm for Earthquakes at depth by about a factor of ten. This, by the way, seems to have recently been expunged from the record and I have to wonder why. Anyway, the point is things are happening on this planet as well as others and our Sun, all at the same time, with no obvious connection.
I find myself wondering if neutrinos, even though the react with ordinary matter very little, might be responsible for increasing heat in planetary bodies by allowing nuclear reactions to happen that require them as one of the reactants, and if such nuclear systems might have a greater cross-section to neutrinos than ordinary matter making them a possible avenue to a more efficient and possibly selective neutrino detector.