CH 8: Einstein Meets Quantum Physics at the South Pole
The South Pole must surely be the harshest place to do physics. I went there to see the gigantic IceCube Neutrino Observatory, which was still being built. IceCube will monitor a cubic kilometre of clear Antarctic ice for neutrinos, by looking for the telltale blue Cherenkov light emitted when neutrinos smash into the ice. What does it take to build such a massive instrument in such a hostile place? And can the sheer size and sensitivity of IceCube help physicists reconcile Einstein's general relativity with quantum mechanics, by revealing the structure of spacetime and pointing them towards the correct theory of quantum gravity?