Detecting a nuclear fission reactor at the centre of the Earth.
Some months ago I wrote a post discussing Marvin Herndon’s controversial theory regarding a nuclear fission reactor, a “georeactor”, at the molten core of the Earth. One point I noted is that it should be entirely practical to falsify such a theory, to test it, to prove the existence of and to study the characteristics of such a nuclear reactor, by simply studying the flux of neutrinos (electron antineutrinos, specifically) from inside the Earth.
Here’s an interesting paper I found discussing just that.
Of course, the usual cautions regarding ArXiv preprint material apply – it is not peer-reviewed, and should be treated with skeptical scrutiny and caution.
Ultimately, the best possible site for a geo-reactor search is Hawaii (panel d) in Fig. 1). This option requires however, construction of a new excavated laboratory. In Hawaii, situated entirely on the oceanic crust with very low geo-U/Th. only the small signal from U/Th deep in the Mantle is visible. The remoteness from populated continents on either side reduces the power reactor signals to a comfortably low level.
With these considerations in mind, I wonder if the IceCube experiment at the South Pole wouldn’t be a much more useful detector site, with perhaps the best possible isolation from manmade reactors as well as geological U/Th radioactivity as you could possibly get? Not to mention the fact that the detector itself already exists, and doesn’t need to be constructed.