New theory suggests dark matter can create new dark matter from regular matter

Dark matter map for the KiDS survey region (region G12). Credit: KiDS survey
A group of international physicists proposes an addition to the theory of dark matter. The group suggests that dark matter was created from regular matter, and that it is possible to create more dark matter by combining regular matter with dark matter in a paper published in Physical Review Letters.

To explain some behaviors that researchers have observed, physicists have proposed the existence of dark matter. This includes the way light bends when it travels from faraway places to our telescopes on Earth. Some parts of the theory are still being worked out. For example, how did we get the current amount of dark matter? This new team has a theory that will answer this question.

Theorists start by citing previous research that suggests some dark matter was created during the "thermal bath"--where primordial plasma composed of regular matter gave rise to dark matter particles. However, this amount is not what is currently believed to be present. The theory is that dark matter particles started to make more dark matter particles from regular particles. The new dark matter particles also had the ability to make new dark matter particle from regular particles.

Reearchers point out that in such a scenario it would appear that there would eventually be no dark matter particles left in the universe. They suggest that this is not possible due to the universe's rapid expansion. Everything was very close in the beginning, making it easier for dark matter to contact regular matter and transform it. As time went on, things became more distant and dark matter came into contact with regular matter less often. This expansion slowed down the conversion of regular material to dark matter, leaving us with what is currently believed to be the total amount.

They have created a model to show that such a theory could explain the current amounts of dark matter. They believe that if their theories are correct, there should be a visible fingerprint in the cosmic background radiation. All that is needed now, they claim, is to locate it.

Continue exploring 3 knowns as well as 3 unknowns regarding dark matter

Further information: Torsten Bringmann and colleagues, Dark Matter From Exponential Growth, Physical Review Letters (2021). Information for Journal: Physical Review Letters Torsten Bringmann and colleagues, Dark Matter From Exponential Growth (2021). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.127.191802

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