How heavy is dark matter? For the first time scientists are radically narrowing the possible range of mass

Scientists have calculated the mass range for the Matter Dark – and it is narrower than the science world thought.

Their findings – are expected to be published in Physical letters B on Mars – radically narrow the range of possible measures for Dark Matter particles, and help focus the search for future Dark Matter hunters. Researchers at the University of Sussex used the proven fact that gravity acts on dark matter just as it does in the visible universe to process the lower and upper limits of the dark matter mass.

The results show that Dark Matter cannot be “ultra light” or “super heavy”, as some have theorized, unless an as-yet undiscovered force also acts on it.

The team uses the assumption that the only force acting on Dark Matter is gravity, and calculates that Dark Matter particles must have a mass between 10-3 eV and 107 eV This is a much narrower range than 10-24 eV – 1019 GeV spectrum which is generally theorized.

What makes the discovery even more significant is that if it turns out that the Dark Matter mass is outside the range predicted by the Sussex team, then this will also prove that an additional force – as well as gravity – acts on the Dark Matter.

Professor Xavier Calmet of the School of Mathematical and Physical Sciences at the University of Sussex said:

“This is the first time anyone has thought of using what we know about quantum gravity as a way to calculate the mass range for Dark Matter. We were surprised to find that no one had done it before – such as our fellow scientists reviewing our work.

“What we have done shows that Dark Matter cannot be ‘ultra light’ or ‘super heavy’ as some theorize – unless there is an additional unknown force acting on it. This part of the research helps physicists in two ways: it focuses on the dark matter search area and potentially also helps to discover whether or not there exists a mysterious additional unknown force in the universe. ”

Folkert Kuipers, a PhD student working with Professor Calmet at the University of Sussex, said:

“As a doctoral student, it’s good to be able to work on research as exciting and influential as this. Our findings are very good news for experimenters as it will help them get closer to discovering the true nature of Dark Matter. ”

The visible universe – such as itself, planets and stars – makes up 25 percent of the total mass in the universe. The remaining 75 percent consists of Dark Matter.

Gravity is known to act on Dark Matter because that is what calculates the shape of galaxies.

Reference: “Theoretical limits on the masses of dark matter” by Xavier Calmet and Folkert Kuipers, January 13, 2021, Letters of physics B.
DOI: 10.1016 / j.physletb.2021.136068

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