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Distant Galaxies and the true Nature of Dark Matter: a new SISSA study

10 February 2022
The research has just been published in "Astronomy and Astrophysics"

At the centre of spiral galaxies – those near to us but also those billions of light-years away – there is a vast spherical region made up of dark matter particles. This region has two defining characteristics: a density that is constant  out to a certain radius that amazingly expands over time, while the density decreases. This suggests the existence of a direct interaction between the elementary particles that make up the dark matter halo and those that make up ordinary matter – protons, electrons, neutrons, and photons. We anticipate that this hypothesis is in direct conflict with the current prevailing theory used to describe the universe – known as Lambda-Cold Dark Matter – which posits that particles of cold dark matter are inert and do not interact with any other particle except gravitationally. 

These important findings have been reported in a new study, recently published in the prestigious “Astronomy and Astrophysics” journal, that studied a large number of distant galaxies, some seven billion light-years away. The study, conducted by Gauri Sharma and Paolo Salucci from SISSA, together with Glen Van de Ven from the University of Vienna, took a new look at one of the greatest mysteries of modern physics. According to the authors, this new research represents a step forward in our understanding of dark matter, the elusive element in our universe which has been theorised based on its demonstrable effects on heavenly bodies, but which is yet to be directly proven. This is despite any number of targeted astrophysical observations and experiments set up for the purpose in dedicated underground laboratories. (Image Buddy_Nath on Pixabay)

Press release

Full paper: https://doi.org/10.1051/0004-6361/202141822