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Physicists Announce Potential Dark Matter Breakthrough

A team of physicists has made what might be the first-ever detection of an axion.


Axions are unconfirmed, hypothetical ultralight particles from beyond the Standard Model of particle physics, which describes the behavior of subatomic particles. Theoretical physicists first proposed the existence of axions in the 1970s in order to resolve problems in the math governing the strong force, which binds particles called quarks together. But axions have since become a popular explanation for dark matter, the mysterious substance that makes up 85% of the mass of the universe, yet emits no light.


If confirmed, it’s not yet certain whether these axions would, in fact, fix the asymmetries in the strong force. And they wouldn’t explain most of the missing mass in the universe, said Kai Martens, a physicist at the University of Tokyo who worked on the experiment. These axions, which appear to be streaming out of the sun, don’t act like the “cold dark matter” that physicists believe fills halos around galaxies. And they would be particles newly brought into being inside the sun, while the bulk of the cold dark matter out there appears to have existed unchanged for billions of years since the early universe.

即使得到证实,也还不确定这些轴子是否会在事实上修复强大力量中的不对称。东京大学(University of Tokyo)的物理学家Kai Martens说,他们无法解释宇宙中大部分缺失的质量。这些看起来像是从太阳中流出的轴子,其行为不像物理学家认为的是一种充满星系周围光环的“冷暗物质”。它们将是新进入太阳内部的粒子,而自早期宇宙以来那里的大部分冷暗物质似乎已存在存在了数十亿年之久。

Read more at Scientific American