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F.L. Villante (Università dell'Aquila e INFN-LNGS)- The physics of the Sun and Solar Neutrinos
Aula B (Dipartimento di Matematica e Fisica)
Dipartimento di Matematica e Fisica
In the last few decades, there was an enormous progress in our
understanding of the Sun. The predictions of the Standard Solar Model
(SSM), which is the fundamental theoretical tool to investigate the solar
interior, have been tested by solar neutrino experiments and by
The deficit of the observed solar neutrino fluxes, reported initially by
Homestake and then confirmed by GALLEX, SAGE, GNO, Kamiokande and
Super-Kamiokande, generated the so-called "solar neutrino problem" which
stimulated a deep investigation of the solar structure. The problem was
solved in 2002 when the SNO experiment obtained a direct evidence for
flavour oscillations of solar neutrinos and, moreover, confirmed the SSM
prediction of the 8B neutrino flux.
The future times could be even more interesting. We now reliably know the
solar neutrino oscillation probability and we can go back to the original
program of solar neutrino studies, i.e. to probe nuclear reactions in the
solar core. At the same time, a new "solar abundance problem" has
emerged. Recent determinations of the photospheric heavy element
abundances indicate that the sun metallicity is lower than previously
assumed. Solar models that incorporate these lower abundances are,
however, no more able to reproduce the helioseismic results.
In this talk, I will review our present knowledge of the Sun and of the
properties of solar neutrinos. I will present the results of the latest
SSM calculations and I will discuss the status of solar neutrino
measurements. I will present the "solar abundance problem" and I will
discuss its possible solutions. I will emphasize the importance of
detecting neutrinos produced within the CN-NO cycle (CNO and ecCNO
neutrinos) and I will discuss the potential of present and future