Dark Matter

Category archives for Dark Matter

“…axions are potentially detectable through their weak coupling to electromagnetism…” -Aaron Chou We know, from hundreds of years of experience with the laws of physics, that momentum is strictly conserved, and therefore a reactionless drive is impossible. What’s not impossible is an engine that has a reaction that’s simply invisible, or otherwise undetectable to us.…

“All we know so far is what doesn’t work.” -Richard Feynman The past month has seen a slew of papers out highlighting the tension between modified gravity and dark matter. Both recognize the same puzzles and problems with the Universe, and both ideas recognize that either one could be valid. In fact, if you look…

“All enterprises that are entered into with indiscreet zeal may be pursued with great vigor at first, but are sure to collapse in the end.” -Tacitus Dark matter makes up the overwhelming majority of mass in the Universe. With five times as much of it as there is normal matter, and the fact that it…

“Faced with the choice between changing one’s mind and proving that there is no need to do so, almost everybody gets busy on the proof.” -J. K. Galbraith Last month, tensions between dark matter simulations and galactic rotation observations reached a new high. Despite all the successes of dark matter on the largest scales —…

“In order for the light to shine so brightly, the darkness must be present.” -Francis Bacon If you had previously thought the Universe contained a certain amount of stuff, like stars, galaxies and matter, then you might think that learning it had ten times as many galaxies might mean it had ten times as much…

“Nothing in the standard cosmological model predicts this, and it is almost impossible to imagine how that model could be modified to explain it, without discarding the dark matter hypothesis completely.” -David Merritt Dark matter is a hugely successful theory for explaining a whole slew of observations about the Universe. Just by adding this one ingredient…

“It may be that ultimately the search for dark matter will turn out to be the most expensive and largest null result experiment since the Michelson-Morley experiment, which failed to detect the ether.” -John Moffat Dark matter is a puzzle that’s now more than 80 years old: the presence of all the known, observable, detectable…

“Motions of the stars tell you how much matter there is. They don’t care what form the matter is, they just tell you that it’s there.” -Pieter van Dokkum Everything in the Universe was born with the same ratios of dark matter to normal matter: approximately 5-to-1. It shows up in everything from the cosmic…

“For me the best answer is not in words but in measurements.” -Elena Aprile If you want to find dark matter directly, your best hope is to gather a tremendous number of nucleons for it to interact with, wait an incredibly long period of time, and devise a device surrounding it capable of detecting even…

“The privilege of a lifetime is being who you are.” –Joseph Campbell Making up some 85% of the mass in our Universe, dark matter is necessary to explain the motions of individual galaxies, the grouping and clustering of assemblies of galaxies, the large-scale structure of the Universe and more. But on a much closer-to-home level,…