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Neutrino Observatory in Theni District

India - based Neutrino Observatory (INO)

1. The India-based Neutrino Observatory (INO) is an e ort aimed at building a world-class underground laboratory to study fundamental issues in physics. It is a mega-science project under the XI five-year plan with an investment of nearly 900 crores, jointly funded by the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE) and the Department of Science and Technology (DST).

2. The ambitious INO proposal has already drawn the worldwide attention of international scientists. Once completed it will be the largest basic sciences facility in India.

3. Nearly 25 institutions and about 90 scientists are involved in the INO collaboration with Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai, being the host institution. This large collaboration is the first of its kind in the country.

4. The laboratory is to be located in Tamilnadu as the steep slopes of the western ghats provide ideal and stable rock conditions for building a large underground cavern, safely, for long-term use.

5. The primary goal of the laboratory is the study of neutrinos from various natural and laboratory sources using an iron calorimeter (ICAL) detector. It is envisaged that such an underground facility will develop into a centre for other studies as well, in physics, biology, geology, etc., all of which will make use of the special conditions that exist deep underground.

6. The ICAL detector that will be installed in the INO laboratory will be the world’s most massive detector. Such an e ort will involve INO–Industry interface in a big way; hence the construction phase itself will draw heavily on available industrial infrastructure, in issues related to mechanical structure, electronics and detector-related technology.

Apart from the scientific goals of INO, therefore, the laboratory itself will greatly enhance the development of detector technology and its varied applications (which have earlier mostly been in the areas of medical imaging).

7. Students of science and technology in the state as well as in the country will benefit by doing research in cutting edge science and technology.

8. INO has no strategic or defence applications. Its operation involves no radioactivity release or toxic emissions.

INO Selected Site

The Department of Atomic Energy and Department of Science and Technology are funding the ambitious India-based Neutrino Observatory (INO). It will be housed underground in the mountains of Western Ghats of Tamilnadu amidst dense rocks. A site on West Bodinayakanur Hills near Pottipuram village in Theni district has been found suitable by geologists and scientists.

INO Details web Address

Many articles, talks and reports about INO are available from the following websites:

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