The Transparent Earth

If you want to send an electronic signal to the other side of the planet, you have a problem: the Earth itself is in the way. The traditional solution is to send your signal the long way around, routing it through either satellites or terrestrial cables, towers, etc. until it reaches the other side. Now scientists are investigating another option: make the Earth transparent. Actually,  they aren’t changing the Earth, but are rather investigating the use of a medium to which the Earth is transparent, namely neutrinos. Tiny and virtually massless, neutrinos can speed through seemingly solid matter, even as thick as the diameter of the Earth, without encountering much resistance along the way. Instead of colliding with and being absorbed or deflected by the atoms of the Earth, neutrinos pass through them as if they weren’t even there. In the future, such properties may make it possible to send neutrino-encoded signals straight through the ground to the other side of the planet. NewScientist has more.

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