What is Dark Matter? 9 Possibilities

2
541
"COSMOS 3D dark matter map" by NASA/ESA/Richard Massey (California Institute of Technology) - Originally uploaded at en.wikipedia as File:COSMOS 3D dark matter map.jpg by User:RichardMassey. (Transfered by User:Quibik.)Also available at http://spacetelescope.org/images/heic0701b/Isosuface data can be found at http://www.roe.ac.uk/~rm/cosmos/. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:COSMOS_3D_dark_matter_map.jpg#/media/File:COSMOS_3D_dark_matter_map.jpg

Dark matter is what keeps physicists up at night.  First identified in the 1930s “dark matter” remains as elusive today as it was then.  Dark matter is known to affect the movement of galaxies and other celestial bodies.  While physicists can measure its effects, what it is made of is still undefined.  

Not that physicists are not trying or they lack ideas, but none seem to completely explain dark matter.  

"COSMOS 3D dark matter map" by NASA/ESA/Richard Massey (California Institute of Technology) - Originally uploaded at en.wikipedia as File:COSMOS 3D dark matter map.jpg by User:RichardMassey. (Transfered by User:Quibik.)Also available at http://spacetelescope.org/images/heic0701b/Isosuface data can be found at http://www.roe.ac.uk/~rm/cosmos/. Licensed under Public Domain via Commons - https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:COSMOS_3D_dark_matter_map.jpg#/media/File:COSMOS_3D_dark_matter_map.jpg

“COSMOS Spending 3D dark matter map” This by wholesale nba jerseys NASA/ESA/Richard Wholesale San Francisco 49ers Jerseys Massey cheap nfl jerseys (California Institute cheap nba jerseys of ?wiatowy Technology)

Top 9 Dark Matter Explanations

  • WIMPs
  • SIMPs
  • Neutralinos
  • Sterile Neutrinos
  • Axions
  • Mirror World Dark Matter
  • Asymmetric Dark Matter
  • Extra Dimensional Dark Matter
  • Composite Dark Matter

WIMPs

The current front runner for explaining dark matter, WIMPs encompass many dark matter particles several of which are contained in this list.  WIMP stands for “weakly interacting massive particles.”  They are thought to interact with one another through the weak force of radioactive decay and only have 1 to 1000 times the mass of a proton.

Despite looking for them on both earth and in space, physicists are having a hard time finding clear connections to WIMPs and the effects of dark matter.

SIMPs

Physicists have a really good idea of how much dark matter exists based on galaxies observation, although they have never actually detected dark matter.  Observations of inner regions of galaxies do not align with their models.

These models often assume that dark matter does not interact with itself.  To remedy this, SIMPs were introduced.  Strongly Interactive Massive Particles seem to eliminate the discrepancy of these inner versus outer galaxies.  This would also explain the photon signal that comes from galaxy cluster.

Neutralinos

Neutralinos come from the theory of Supersymmetry.  Basically Supersymmetry says that every particle has a “super” partner that fills the holes in the standard model.  But it has yet to be observed.

Some of these “super” partners like those of the Z boson and photon have characteristics similar to dark matter.  Of these the Neutralino is most likely to be the neutralino and would solve two major issues in physics.

  1. Tell us the identity of dark matter
  2. Give us proof of Supersymmetry

However it also opens up a ton of new questions, essentially  telling us there is a lot more particles to be discovered.  

"CMS Higgs-event" by Lucas Taylor / CERN

“CMS ?? Higgs-event” with by the Lucas Taylor / Affecting CERN

Sterile Neutrinos

Neutrinos are odd enough being almost massless, the ability to shape-shift and pass through and entire planet without hitting anything, but they have an even more strange counterpart, the sterile neutrino.

These sterile neutrinos would be virtually unresponsive to particles around them.  So much so that they may never collide in the entire age of the universe.  This aversion to interaction would make them almost impossible to detect, but they may decay into photons, a particle we can easily detect.  Hopefully the new ASTRO-H Japanese telescope will help shed some light on the decaying sterile neutrino hypothesis.

Axions

First discovered in the early 1980s, axions are experiencing a surge in popularity as the answer to dark matter.  The University of Washington’s Axion Dark Matter Experiment (ADMX) is searching searching for these particles by using a strong magnetic field to try and turn them into photons.  With a greater ability to detect these particles, scientists are dusting off this theory and searching for new ways to detect them.

Mirror World Dark Matter

While the mirror world dark matter theory will prove to make defining dark matter almost certainly impossible it does seek to explain the phenomenon.  This theory basically says that dark matter exists in a separate universe will similar elemental particles but only exert the force of gravity.  Thus exerting pull on our universe but no other signs.  This works well with what we do know about dark matter (its gravitational pull) but does little to satisfy any why or how questions.

Asymmetric Dark Matter

Asymmetric dark matter is basically just the anti-matter, matter scenario.  In this theory, dark matter, collided with anti-dark matter thus leaving behind what we see today as dark matter.

Extra Dimensional Dark Matter

A slight variation of the Mirror World Dark Matter Theory, Extra Dimensional Dark Matter would simply exist in a fourth spacial dimension that we have yet to see.  This fourth dimension would be too small for us to see a particle’s movements with it, rather we would see multiple particles with the same charge but different masses.  Proving this theory would support String Theory which needs extra dimensions to work.

Composite Dark Matter

Composite Dark Matter is very simply a combination of the above theories.  Since none of them fill the bill completely it might be several of them actually being the answer to the question:  “What is dark matter?”

Man On Mars? What The Congress Reveals With Spending Bill
4 New Atomic Elements Declared
SHARE

Leave a Reply

2 Comments on "What is Dark Matter? 9 Possibilities"

Notify of
avatar
Sort by:   newest | oldest | most voted
trackback

[…] in our Universe, than can be produced by all the matter and gas that we see, then the idea of dark matter arise. And problems with it. The dark matter doesn’t appear to emit any form of light or […]

trackback

[…] stellar systems, charged particles, intergalactic gas – all embedded in large halos of dark matter. Given that clusters drifting through space, galaxies may occasionally collide. Although collisions […]

wpDiscuz