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Dark matter may be coming to light

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  • Dark matter may be coming to light

    They may have discovered evidence of axions, proposed candidates for composing dark matter.

    Source: Futurism

    “We are pretty confident this excess [of x-rays] exists, and very confident there’s something new among this excess,” Safdi said in a statement. “If we were 100% sure that what we are seeing is a new particle, that would be huge. That would be revolutionary in physics.”

    It’s possible, he says, that axions could be causing this excess of X-ray emissions. Axions are hypothetical elementary particles that were first postulated in 1977, and many scientists consider them to be a dark-matter candidate.


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    Blessings,
    Lee
    "What I pray of you is, to keep your eye upon Him, for that is everything. Do you say, 'How am I to keep my eye on Him?' I reply, keep your eye off everything else, and you will soon see Him. All depends on the eye of faith being kept on Him. How simple it is!" (J.B. Stoney)

  • #2
    Originally posted by lee_merrill View Post
    They may have discovered evidence of axions, proposed candidates for composing dark matter.

    Source: Futurism

    “We are pretty confident this excess [of x-rays] exists, and very confident there’s something new among this excess,” Safdi said in a statement. “If we were 100% sure that what we are seeing is a new particle, that would be huge. That would be revolutionary in physics.”

    It’s possible, he says, that axions could be causing this excess of X-ray emissions. Axions are hypothetical elementary particles that were first postulated in 1977, and many scientists consider them to be a dark-matter candidate.


    Source

    © Copyright Original Source



    Blessings,
    Lee
    Interesting. I will look into the axion/dark matter relationship more. Not my specialty..
    Glendower: I can call spirits from the vasty deep.
    Hotspur: Why, so can I, or so can any man;
    But will they come when you do call for them? Shakespeare’s Henry IV, Part 1, Act III:

    go with the flow the river knows . . .

    Frank

    I do not know, therefore everything is in pencil.

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    • #3
      Axions are interesting because they weren't originally proposed as a solution to dark matter — they solved some problem in (i think) quantum chromodynamics. Not sure if that problem is considered solved or not a problem now, but axions stuck around, in part because their existence wouldn't completely muck up the Standard Model, and in part because they're relatively easy to make tests for. Apparently, in strong magnetic fields, they can switch identity back and forth with photons. So, an "axion detector" can be as simple as shining a laser at a wall, putting a strong magnetic field along its path, and then seeing if any photons show up on the far side of the wall. That could happen if the photon changes into an axion, passes through the wall, and then changes back.

      Unfortunately, you have to tune the laser to the mass of the axion, so while easy and cheap to construct, these sort of experiments take a lot of time to actually eliminate any significant mass range.

      The axion's mass is also expected to be on the low side of the currently favored WIMP model of dark matter. For most of the potential mass range, this is ok, since you just assume there are more of them. But below a certain point, then you start losing the properties that made WIMPS look so good in the first place.

      Overall, from what i can figure out of the physics community, if you ranked dark matter candidates in order of descending appeal, you'd have:
      WIMPS > axions > something that's not been proposed yet > sterile neutrinos > modified gravity.
      Obviously, some of these — even modified gravity — will have passionate supporters, so think of this as an average across the entire field.
      "Any sufficiently advanced stupidity is indistinguishable from trolling."

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