The hunt for the Dark Matter

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Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS)

An exorbitant and dubious space-based cosmic ray identifier has discovered conceivable indications of dark matter, the undetectable stuff thought to supply a large portion of the universe’s mass. Or on the other hand so says Samuel Ting, a particel physicist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in Cambridge and pioneer of the Alpha Magnetic Spectrometer (AMS), which is roosted on the International Space Station (ISS).

In 2014, AMS scientists revealed a surprising motion of positrons that kicked in at energies over 10 giga-electron volts (GeV) and appeared to blur by around 300 GeV. The abundance could emerge out of dark matter particles impacting and obliterating each other to deliver electron-positron sets, and the energy of the falloff may point to the mass of the dark matter particles. Presently, with three fold the number of information, AMS specialists have unmistakably settled that energy cutoff. The positron abundance begins at 25 GeV and falls forcefully at 284 GeV, the 227-part AMS group detailed in Physical Review Letters. “It’s critical in light of the fact that you do begin to see a turnaround” in the energy range, Olinto says. The cutoff is steady with substantial dark matter particles with a mass of around 800 GeV, the scientists report.


AGUILAR ET AL., PHYS. REV. LETT.122, 041102, (2019) 

Black Holes Form in Rapidly Growing Galaxies

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Another investigation, upheld by subsidizing from NASA, the National Science Foundation and a fund from the European Commission, proposes that enormous black holes flourish when galaxies shape rapidly. To make a galaxy, you require stars, which are conceived out of gas mists, yet additionally an undetectable substance called dark matter, which goes about as a paste to fend off stars from flying from the galaxy.

In the event that the dark matter‘s “halo” structure becomes rapidly from the get-go in its life, the arrangement of stars is smothered. Rather a gigantic black hole can frame before the galaxy comes to shape. Black holes covetously eat gas that would have generally created new stars, and end up bigger and bigger.


John H. Wise, et al., “Formation of massive black holes in rapidly growing pre-galactic gas clouds,” (Nature 2019).

New Horizons Reveals Best Image of Kuiper Belt Object Ultima Thule

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Ultima Thule

The marvels – and secrets – of Kuiper Belt Object (KBO) 2014 MU69 keep on increasing as NASA’s New Horizons shuttle bars home new pictures of its New Year’s Day 2019 flyby target.

This picture, taken amid the notable Jan. 1 flyby of what’s casually known as Ultima Thule, is the clearest see yet of this wonderful, antiquated object in the furthest reaches of the nearby planetary group – and the principal little “KBO” at any point investigated by a space probe.

Gotten with the wide-edge Multicolor Visible Imaging Camera (MVIC) part of New Horizons’ Ralph instrument, this picture was taken when the KBO was 4,200 miles (6,700 kilometers) from the probe, at 05:26 UT (12:26 a.m. EST) on Jan. 1 – only seven minutes previously nearest approach. With a unique goals of 440 feet (135 meters) per pixel, the picture was put away in the probe’s information memory and transmitted to Earth on Jan. 18-19. Researchers at that point honed the picture to improve fine detail. (This procedure – known as deconvolution – additionally intensifies the graininess of the picture when seen at high difference.)

The diagonal lighting of this picture uncovers new topographic subtleties along the day/night limit, or eliminator, close to the best. These subtleties incorporate various little pits up to about 0.4 miles (0.7 kilometers) in distance across. The substantial round component, around 4 miles (7 kilometers) over, on the littler of the two projections, likewise has all the earmarks of being a profound melancholy. Not clear is whether these pits are impact creators or highlights coming about because of different procedures, for example, “collapse pits” or the old venting of volatile materials.

The two lobes likewise show numerous interesting light and dark patterns of obscure inception, which may uncover hints about how this body was assembled amid the arrangement of the close planetary system 4.5 billion years prior. A standout amongst the most striking of these is the brilliant “collar” isolating the two lobes.


NASA/Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory/Southwest Research Institute