Indian Science Congress: Scientists push Tamil Nadu to okay neutrino project

DECCAN CHRONICLE. | A RAGU RAMAN
Published Jan 8, 2017, 6:16 am IST
Updated Jan 8, 2017, 6:23 am IST
The underground lab can be built with the controlled blast system and it is well proved that the dams will not be damaged because of the tunnelling.
Tamil Nadu government
 Tamil Nadu government

Tirupati: After getting a go-ahead from the eminent physicists, including Nobel laureate Takaaki Kajita who won the prize for discovering neutrino oscillations, scientists from India have appealed to the Tamil Nadu government to give its nod for the basic science project India-based Neutrino Observatory (INO) at the Indian Science Congress here.

The ambitious project, which aims at building a world-class laboratory at Bodi hills in Pottipuram village in Theni district is awaiting clearance from Tamil Nadu Pollution Control Board for more than a year.

“We sincerely hope that the state government will give his nod for the project. But, a lot of people from other states are also interested in the project.  Now, people know that it is only a scientific project and has no bad effect,” Dr Prfaulla Kumar Behera, associate professor, IIT Madras told this paper on the sidelines of the scientific congress.

The INO will use a 50,000-tonne magnetised iron calorimeter to detect particles called muons produced on rare occasions that neutrinos interact with matter.
With works for LIGO-India project initiated at a primary site, the scientists feel that Tamil Nadu needs to speed up its approval process for the mega science project in the state. It is also expected to boost basic science research in South India.  

Ruling out the talks of shifting the laboratory out of the state Mr Behera said, “In Tamil Nadu, we have done the lot of work in the last few years. We even got the approval for the required land from the state government.  We hope the state government will act fast.”

“The Nobel laureate (Takaaki Kajita) himself has wanted this project in the Indian Science Congress. What else proof we want that it is only a science lab?” he asked.  

Professor D. Indumathi from Institute of Mathematical Sciences in Chennai said “It is purely a science lab and no radiation will be emitted from the lab. The underground lab can be built with the controlled blast system and it is well proved that the dams will not be damaged because of the tunnelling.” She also explained the audience about why they needed to build the laboratory in the underground.





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