Welcome to the Astrophysics Lab!

Welcome to the website of the Astrophysics Laboratory (Ishino Lab), Okayama University!
We aim to detect inflation, which is thought to have occurred in the early universe, from observations of the Cosmic Microwave Background (CMB), the oldest light in the universe, and we focus on pioneering modern cosmology. We are also working on the development of a unique high sensitivity superconducting neutrino detector, with neutrino observations as the main focus for the development of particle physics.

How did the universe begin?

The universe was once a searing ball of fire. You may have heard of the Big Bang Theory. It literally means a big explosion and is talked about in connection with the birth of the universe, but in fact the Big Bang Theory alone does not explain our universe; it is like a missing piece of the puzzle. The missing piece is called inflation. This is the name given to the super-rapid expansion of space that is thought to have taken place before the Big Bang. We rely on the oldest light in the universe, emitted by the Big Bang, to find the remaining pieces.

What are the elementary particles that make us up?

All matter is made up of a combination of subatomic particles. Subatomic particles are the smallest particles that cannot be further divided, such as electrons and quarks. Our goal is to understand how these subatomic particles interact to form the structure and properties of the universe. Neutrinos, one of the elementary particles, are particularly difficult to interact with and remain a great mystery. We are trying to unravel this mystery by observing neutrinos from the Sun.