Machine learning method improves reconstruction and classification of low-energy IceCube events

Machine learning (ML) has proven to be an invaluable tool for data analysis, including the field of particle physics. Now, ML techniques are being employed to analyze data collected by the IceCube Neutrino Observatory, a cubic-kilometer array of optical sensors buried in Antarctic ice that detect neutrinos, ghostly subatomic particles that act as cosmic messengers. […]

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IceCube neutrinos give us first glimpse into the inner depths of an active galaxy

For the first time, an international team of scientists have found evidence of high-energy neutrino emission from NGC 1068, also known as Messier 77, an active galaxy in the constellation Cetus and one of the most familiar and well-studied galaxies to date. First spotted in 1780, this galaxy, located 47 million light-years away from us, […]

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IceCube analysis indicates there are many high-energy astrophysical neutrino sources 

Back in 2013, the IceCube Neutrino Observatory—a cubic-kilometer neutrino detector embedded in Antarctic ice—announced the first observation of high-energy (above 100 TeV) neutrinos originating from outside our solar system, spawning a new age in astronomy. Four years later, on September 22, 2017, a high-energy neutrino event was detected coincident with a gamma-ray flare from a […]

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IceCube probes for quantum gravity using astrophysical neutrino flavors

Neutrinos are ghostly, nearly massless particles that can travel extraordinarily large distances unimpeded. Because of this, neutrinos act as “messengers,” harboring information about their sources. Although most detected neutrinos originate from the sun or Earth’s atmosphere, there exist highly energetic astrophysical neutrinos that originate from the farthest reaches of outer space.  In 2013, the first […]

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Newly discovered optical effect allows IceCube to deduce ice crystal properties

Every second, 100 trillion neutrinos pass through the human body. These tiny, almost massless particles travel tremendous distances through space while carrying information about their sources and are created by some of the most energetic phenomena in the universe. But neutrinos are incredibly difficult to detect, requiring a one-of-a-kind detector that can “see” these nearly […]

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IceCube sets strongest limits on galaxy clusters as potential neutrino sources

At present, one of the long-standing astronomical mysteries is the origin of cosmic rays, high-energy charged particles hurtling through space at the speed of light. Upon entering the atmosphere, they interact with atoms and produce an air shower of secondary particles, including nearly massless subatomic particles called neutrinos. Although very little is known about high-energy […]

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Search for neutrino emission associated with LIGO/Virgo gravitational waves

Gravitational waves (GWs) are a signature for some of the most energetic phenomena in the universe, which cause ripples in space-time that travel at the speed of light. These events, spurred by massive accelerating objects, act as cosmic messengers that carry with them clues to their origins. They are also probable sources for highly energetic […]

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IceCube conducts innovative search for unstable sterile neutrinos

For over 20 years, physicists have performed experiments that hint at the existence of an elusive fourth type of neutrino, the “sterile” neutrino. Neutrinos—tiny, almost massless particles—are also known as “ghost particles” because they rarely interact with the matter they travel through. On the other hand, the appropriately named sterile neutrino does not interact with […]

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IceCube conducts first search for astrophysical neutrinos from MeV gamma-ray blazars

Although high-energy cosmic rays have long been observed arriving at Earth, their origins have eluded researchers for years. The key may lie in neutrinos, which are tiny, nearly massless particles that can travel along a straight path from their sources. High-energy neutrinos that originate from outside our solar system are called cosmic neutrinos, which can […]

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The hunt for neutrinos from gamma-ray bursts

In 2012, shortly after the IceCube Neutrino Observatory was completed, the IceCube Collaboration announced in Nature an important and unexpected result in neutrino astrophysics: gamma-ray bursts (GRBs), which were one of the two leading candidates for sources of high-energy neutrinos and cosmic rays, did not report any neutrino excesses.  Since then, IceCube has continued to […]

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