Questions tagged [dark-matter]

Matter not observed directly but inferred to exist based upon its gravitational effects.

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If dark matter only interacts with gravity, why doesn't it all clump together in a single point?

I'm a complete layperson. As I understand, dark matter theoretically only interacts with the gravitational force, and doesn't interact with the other three fundamental forces: weak nuclear force, ...
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What is the upper-limit on intrinsic heating due to dark matter?

Cold dark matter is thought to fill our galactic neighborhood with a density $\rho$ of about 0.3 GeV/cm${}^3$ and with a velocity $v$ of roughly 200 to 300 km/s. (The velocity dispersion is much ...
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Are modified theories of gravity credible?

I'm a statistician with a little training in physics and would just like to know the general consensus on a few things. I'm reading a book by John Moffat which basically tries to state how GR makes ...
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Why isn't dark matter just ordinary matter?

There's more gravitational force in our galaxy (and others) than can be explained by counting stars made of ordinary matter. So why not lots of dark planetary systems (i.e., without stars) made of ...
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Why do physicists assume that dark matter is weakly interacting?

IceCube, XENON, etc, keep yielding negative results. If dark matter exists, it doesn't interact with baryonic matter at the energy ranges they can detect. The response is to build even bigger ...
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How do we know Dark Matter isn't simply Neutrinos?

What evidence is there that dark matter isn't one of the known types of neutrinos? If it were, how would this be measurable?
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How can dark matter collapse without collisions or radiation?

I understand that dark matter does not collapse into dense objects like stars apparently because it is non-interacting or radiating and thus cannot lose energy as it collapses. However why then does ...
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Can the Sun capture dark matter gravitationally?

I think my title sums it up. Given that we think the dark matter is pseudo-spherically distributed and orbits in the Galactic potential with everything else, then I assume that its speed with respect ...
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Is Dark Matter called “Matter” only because of gravity?

As far as my understanding goes, dark matter is nothing but an amount of gravitational force, from yet unresolved/undiscovered source(s), needed to explain some observed attributes of our universe. ...
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Why doesn't dark matter affect planetary motion?

If the universe is made up of ~95% dark matter, and it interacts only gravitationally then why didn't Newton and Kepler discover it before ? Why does it show itself only in the radial velocity profile ...
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Why is Anti-helium so important in the search for dark matter?

I've been reading/hearing that if the AMS satellite measures a significant flux of anti-helium in cosmic rays, that would be an irrefutable proof of dark matter. I was wondering: Why is that? what is ...
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How did the universe shift from “dark matter dominated” to “dark energy dominated”?

In order to get dark energy to dominate, wouldn't you first need another form of energy to push the expansion until dark energy could dominate? Otherwise I don't understand how the universe could ...
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How do people calculate proportions of dark matter, dark energy and baryonic matter of the universe?

The Wikipedia page on dark matter mentions that the Planck mission had revealed that in our universe ordinary baryonic matter, dark matter and dark energy are present in the ratio: 4.9%, 26.8% and 68....
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How do we know Dark Matter is non-baryonic? [duplicate]

It seems widely stated, but not thoroughly explained, that Dark Matter is not normal matter as we understand it. Wikipedia states "Consistency with other observations indicates that the vast majority ...
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Why can't dark matter be black holes?

Since 90 % of matter is what we cannot see, why can't it be black-holes from early on? Is is possible to figure out that there are no black holes in the line of sight of various stars/galaxies we ...
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If perfect blackness violates the Uncertainty Principle, how isn't dark matter a violation?

In a recent tweet, Dr. Michio Kaku stated that perfect blackness would violate the Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle, i.e. every object must emit some radiation. I have two questions regarding this ...
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Why are neutrinos ruled out as a major (or even sole) component of dark matter?

A number of times I have encountered in text-books and articles that neutrinos might contribute only a small fraction to dark matter. The reason has to do with the fact that if all of the dark matter ...
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Is there evidence of dark matter in our galaxy?

Is there evidence of dark matter in our galaxy? How can we measure this, say, how many percent of the center of our galaxy is dark matter? I did not find the answer in the question What's dark ...
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Dark matter and dark energy references

I've been looking for questions about dark matter, and I've read some very interesting answers. However, I desire too look into it deeply. This is not actually a question. I'm asking the community ...
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Why hasn't warm dark matter replaced cold dark matter as the standard model of cosmology?

The $\Lambda\rm CDM$ (cold dark matter with cosmological constant) is the current standard model of cosmology because the model comes with a long list of phenomena successfully explained by it. ...
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Is the term 'matter' in 'dark matter' misleading? [closed]

If the only evidence for dark matter we have is gravitational, why call it 'matter' rather than 'observed space-time geometry that does not match predictions'? General Relativity tells us that mass ...
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What gives mass to dark matter particles?

Assuming that dark matter is not made of WIMPs (weakly interacting massive particles), but interacts only gravitationally, what would be the possible mechanism giving mass to dark matter particles? If ...
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Does it make sense to continue searching for dark matter on Earth?

The Large Underground Xenon Detector (LUX) recently released results1 that they have found no signs of dark matter2 after a ~3 month search this spring and summer. The LUX group plans to spend all of ...
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Distribution of Dark Matter around galaxies [duplicate]

It is well-known that measurements of the velocity profile in galaxies are not compatible with Newtonian laws. A way to circumvent the problem is to assume that galaxies are surrounded by a spherical ...
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Correlation between outstanding hints in experimental particle physics

The 115 GeV ATLAS Higgs with enhanced diphoton decays has gone away but there are several other recent tantalizing hints relevant for particle physics, namely CoGeNT's 7-8 GeV dark matter particle ...
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Can the Sun / Earth have a dark matter core?

If dark matter interacts with ordinary matter at all, it should most likely occur where ordinary matter is densest. Hence we have papers about neutron stars possibly containing dark matter cores (...
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When galaxies collide, what happens to dark vs. light matter?

I have read that galactic collisions have been used as evidence demonstrating the effects of dark matter. In particular, that luminous matter slows down and interacts while dark matter shoots through, ...
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Dark matter and SO(10) grand unification

$SO(10)$ grand unified theories nicely accommodate a massive $\sim 10^{14-15}\; GeV$ sterile neutrino. Would this be a viable dark matter candidate? I haven't found any specific material regarding ...
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How did we 'discover' dark matter? [closed]

I'm an astrophysics student and I've been researching this topic and there is one point that keeps eluding me. How did the scientific community realize that there had to be dark matter in the ...
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Is dark matter repulsive to dark matter? Why?

I think I saw in a video that if dark matter wasn't repulsive to dark matter, it would have formed dense massive objects or even black holes which we should have detected. So, could dark matter be ...
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How long has dark matter been around?

I've read that dark matter's existence is theorized because galaxies spin/clump in a way that would require much more mass than there appears to be. Also that there is gravitational lensing in places ...
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Is matter - dark matter symmetry possible?

The gravitational lensing evidence suggests massive and relatively dense accumulations of dark matter in space. However, dark matter collapsing to dense regions is unlikely due to energy conservation. ...
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What is a reasonably accurate but simple model of the Milky Way's gravitational field?

I am putting together a toy program which shows how stars move around in the galaxy. To run the simulation I need to know strength of the Milky Way's gravitational field at any location in it. I'm ...
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How does dark matter collapse?: Entropy considerations

Inspired by this question. I believe that the usual explanation that preserves the second law of thermodynamics as an astrophysical gas cloud collapses under gravity is that the gas must heat and ...
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How Does Dark Matter Form Lumps?

As far as we know, the particles of dark matter can interact with each other only by gravitation. No electromagnetics, no weak force, no strong force. So, let's suppose a local slight concentration ...
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Do we have an idea about the amount of matter in the universe?

Do we consider the amount of matter in the universe to be "infinite"? Or do we have an idea about "how much" there is?
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Why don't stars have Keplerian orbits?

In a comment to Rob Jeffries' answer to this question on spherical galaxies, Incnis Mrsi commented There should exist the entire range of orbits in a spherically symmetric system: near-circular, ...
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What exactly is 'Dark Matter'? [duplicate]

There are many documentaries, forums, blogs and more dedicated to Dark Matter. I have been frantically searching for an answer to my question however none of my sources have clarity to the matter of ...
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1answer
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If our galaxy's dark matter halo is so large and diffuse, why is the ordinary matter in it so much more localised and compactly located?

I just read that our galaxy's dark matter halo is estimated to be 1.5m ly across, compared to the visible galaxy's 100k ly across, needed to explain stellar rotation curves. Why would this be? By ...
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Could Dark Matter form black hole?

Some people speculate that the mysterious dark matter in the universe could be tiny black holes. But on the other side, could dark matter particles attract each other by gravity and finally form a ...
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1answer
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How the CMB anisotropy is linked to the existence of cold dark matter and dark energy?

After the data from the cosmic microwave background has been collected by WMAP or Planck, what types of analysis is needed to conduct in order to deduce the cold dark matter density and the ...
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Does the Milky Way have dark matter satellite galaxies?

This recent paper by Weinberg et al. discusses that one potential problem with our current model of Cold Dark Matter (CDM) is that is predicts a greater number of satellite galaxies for the Milky Way ...
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Could the dark matter sector be boring?

People always talk about finding good dark matter (DM) candidates of beyond Standard Model (SM) theories. To be a proper candidate the particles should not decay into the SM particles and could ...
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Integrated Boltzmann equation for dark matter

In Dodelson's book, the equation for a scattering process $ a + b \Leftrightarrow c + d $ is given as \begin{align} a^{-3} \frac{\mathrm d (n_a a^3)}{\mathrm d t}&=-n^{\text{eq}}_a n^{\text{eq}}...
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Justification for new theories of Particle Physics and General Relativity

In reference to arxiv:1212.4893v3 and arxiv:1206.5078v2 papers of Ma and Wang, they have proposed new theories in particle physics, the weakton model where quarks and leptons are formed using these ...
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Mass density of dark matter in solar system near us

What is the approximate mass density of dark matter in our solar system at the radius of the Earth's orbit? I would like some idea of the mass of dark matter going through each cubic meter of ...
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What current alternatives are there to the standard concordance model of cosmology?

The current "standard model" or concordance model of cosmology is Lambda CDM which includes late time acceleration due to a cosmological constant, cold dark matter as the missing matter component and ...
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Is Dark Matter expected to be equally distributed in our solar system?

If dark matter winds up being roughly equally distributed in our solar system would this mean it has no net gravitational influence? Furthermore, do we expect dark matter to be less dense out in ...
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Why do we need to find 5 Higgs Bosons to prove the existence of the dark matter?

I was recently watching a show that say we need at least 5 Higgs Boson to prove the existence of the dark matter because it will strengthen the concept of symmetry. Why is that so? Because, I am not ...
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How convincing is the evidence for dark matter annihilation at 130 GeV in the galactic center from the Fermi Satellite data?

I listened to Christoph Weniger present his results at SLAC today. See his paper is here: http://arxiv.org/abs/1204.2797 and also see a different analysis here: http://arxiv.org/abs/1205.1045. The ...