Nor-Tech Provides HPC Technology for IceCube and LIGO Nobel Prize Projects
A major physics discovery was just announced; the first visible detection of a neutrino event. This was made possible by the powerful HPC technology Nor-Tech continues to provide to two Nobel Physics Prize winning projects, IceCube and LIGO.
Recently, IceCube was able to visibly pinpoint the source of a neutrino—in this case a blazar. Blazars are supermassive black holes at the center of a galaxy that feed on matter. This feeding process produces visible jets, which IceCube researchers were able to see for the first time.
IceCube is designed specifically to identify neutrinos from space. It’s a cube (a kilometer cubed) of Antarctic ice laced with photo-detectors.
Only in 2006 were scientists able to detect astronomical events without the use of visible light, infrared light or microwaves. This was done most notably by LIGO, the hardware that detected gravitational waves. But the IceCube detector started detecting cosmic neutrinos a few years earlier—they just weren’t visible until now.
LIGO was first in one aspect, though: it detected an event where a gravitational wave signal was accompanied a burst of gamma rays (an optical signal). LIGO has since detected these events multiple times.
We have been working with several of the world’s leading research institutions involved with LIGO and IceCube projects for more than 10 years by designing, building, and upgrading HPC technology that made these game-changing discoveries possible.