One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
A neutral subatomic particle with a mass close to zero and half-integral spin, rarely reacting with normal matter. Three kinds of neutrinos are known, associated with the electron, muon, and tau particle.
- ‘The proton and the neutron are baryons; the electron, the muon, and the neutrino are leptons; whilst the pions are mesons.’
- ‘And if we hit a proton with an electron, we get a neutron and an electron neutrino at the other end.’
- ‘The leptons consist of the charged electron, muon and tau, together with three electronically neutral particles - the electron neutrino, muon neutrinos and tau neutrinos.’
- ‘The electron and muon neutrinos are easier to produce and detect than the tau neutrino.’
- ‘Cosmic neutrinos are extremely high energy subatomic particles, like protons and electrons, but neutrinos have no electrical charge.’
1930s: from Italian, diminutive of neutro ‘neutral’.
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