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Simple telescope picks up hint of the Universe’s first stars, dark matter | Ars Technica
The Universe cooled faster than we thought, possibly due to weird form of dark matter.
Today, a small team of researchers is announcing that its correspondingly small telescope picked up something that theoreticians had only suggested might exist: a signal produced by the very first stars in our Universe. Their radiotelescope, only two meters across, didn't image the stars directly. Instead, it picked up an imprint on the Cosmic Microwave Background left by the matter that these stars interacted with.
And, while the signal had been predicted by theoreticians, calculations had suggested that it would be substantially smaller than it actually is. If the results hold up, then it could be a sign that dark matter looks very different from what we had expected.
space  astronomy  science  dark_matter 
4 weeks ago by rgl7194
This is exactly the wrong time to retreat from space - The Washington Post
Life may reside in the ocean worlds of the moons of Jupiter and Saturn or be revealed in the ancient history of Mars. Gravitational-wave observatories probe the inner workings of black holes, like the one at the center of our galaxy. We have the opportunity to understand the origins of dark matter and dark energy, which constitute 95 percent of the universe but remain mysterious. The United States has been a remarkable engine of innovation, creating knowledge for the ages and solving society’s problems today. We have the talent and the entrepreneurial spirit to build on our grand history of discovery. We need only the vision and the will.
nasa  space  Rosenbaum  opinion  gravitational_waves  dark_matter 
february 2018 by pagecarr
How Superfluid Dark Matter Mimics an Old Idea About Gravity | Quanta Magazine
Does the force of gravity change at large scales? Perhaps not, but a new theory of dark matter shows why that could appear to be the case.
articles  physics  cosmology  dark_matter 
june 2017 by gmisra
Massive Galaxy Made of Dark Matter Puzzles Astrophysicists
The surprising discovery of a massive, Milky Way-size galaxy that is made of 99.99 percent dark matter has astronomers dreaming up new ideas about how galaxies form.
articles  astronomy  dark_matter 
may 2017 by gmisra
APOD: 2006 August 24 - The Matter of the Bullet Cluster
Explanation: The matter in galaxy cluster 1E 0657-56, fondly known as the "bullet cluster", is shown in this composite image. A mere 3.4 billion light-years away, the bullet cluster's individual galaxies are seen in the optical image data, but their total mass adds up to far less than the mass of the cluster's two clouds of hot x-ray emitting gas shown in red. Representing even more mass than the optical galaxies and x-ray gas combined, the blue hues show the distribution of dark matter in the cluster. Otherwise invisible to telescopic views, the dark matter was mapped by observations of gravitational lensing of background galaxies. In a text book example of a shock front, the bullet-shaped cloud of gas at the right was distorted during the titanic collision between two galaxy clusters that created the larger bullet cluster itself. But the dark matter present has not interacted with the cluster gas except by gravity. The clear separation of dark matter and gas clouds is considered direct evidence that dark matter exists.
APOD  astronomy  photography  dark_matter 
march 2017 by rgl7194
A history of dark matter | Ars Technica
No definitive answer, but the search has gotten more interesting since the 19th century.
Across decades, the hunt for a dark matter particle has looked at many possible solutions—but so far, humanity hasn’t produced a clear answer. Is dark matter a neutrino? An axion? A figment of our imagination? Scientists don’t agree, though experiments from XENON to ADMX continue to strive towards giving us an answer.
“We have to be extremely open-minded about what it might be,” James Bullock, a professor of physics and astronomy at UC Irvine, told Ars. “Dark matter could be even more interesting than we were thinking it was going to be 20 or 30 years ago.”
The built-up confusion surrounding dark matter today can be extremely hard to parse. Recent headlines declared dark matter may not even exist, and even dedicated followers could be forgiven for asking how scientists came up with the idea in the first place. So to better understand dark matter’s place in the Universe, it may be helpful to take a look back at how our ideas about this mysterious material started and evolved over time—it's time to traverse a condensed history of dark matter.
dark_matter  astronomy 
march 2017 by rgl7194
Massive Galaxy Made of Dark Matter Puzzles Astrophysicists | Quanta Magazine
The surprising discovery of a massive, Milky Way-size galaxy that is made of 99.99 percent dark matter has astronomers dreaming up new ideas about how galaxies form.
articles  astrophysics  dark_matter 
october 2016 by gmisra

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