Astrophysicists and other scientists had been struggling for almost a century to understand the origin of dark matter and what exactly is this mysterious structure made of. We know for sure that it’s not composed of the traditional matter as the one we’re all interacting with, which is made of electrons, protons, and neutrons.
According to a new study from the University of Melbourne and published in Physical Review Letters, a new theory explaining the origin of dark matter emerges.
Expanding bubbles from the Early Universe is the key
Although scientists are certain that dark matter is out there, somewhere, they cannot directly observe it yet. This mysterious structure is known to play a critical role in the motion of stars within galaxies. Dr. Michael Baker, who is one of the new study’s authors and also a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the University of Melbourne, says the following:
“Our proposed mechanism suggests that the dark matter abundance may have been determined in a cosmological phase transition,”
“These phase transitions are expected to have taken place in the early universe and can be similar to bubbles of gas forming in boiling water. We show that it is natural to expect dark matter particles to find it very difficult enter these bubbles, which gives a new explanation for the amount of dark matter observed in the universe.”
Scientists are hoping to detect the new particle someday if it exists and further analyze its properties such as mass and interactions in a laboratory.
The research was done in collaboration with Professor Joachim Kopp from CERN and the University of Mainz and Assistant Professor Andrew Long from Rice University, Texas. Further studies are required, of course, as dark matter is not called ‘dark’ for no reason: it’s one of the most mysterious terms in astronomy.