Scientists know more about what dark matter isn’t than what it is. Astronomers can see light bend from the gravity of invisible objects and they can also measure stars orbiting around galaxies far faster than they should. This can only accounted for if there is a large anoint of invisible matter tied-up in each galaxy, contributing to its mass and rotation rate. A shocking new theory proposes a suitably extreme origin for the fifth fundamental force that is dark matter.
A team of experimental physicists have suggested black holes could be generating swirling clouds of planet-sized particles that could be the elusive dark matter thought to hold galaxies together.
This theory’s ramifications are huge, suggesting that the Standard Model, explaining how the basic building blocks of matter interact is no longer sufficient.
Developed more than 30 years ago, the Standard Model has so far successfully described phenomena ranging from subatomic to galactic scales and have been experimentally tested to a precision of twelve decimals.
However it appears the model is actually incapable of accounting for everything in the universe.
Hopes that the discovery of the Higgs would be followed by hints of other particles that match the properties of dark matter have so far been dead ends.
Dr Asimina Arvanitaki, of the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Waterloo said: “We tend to think about particles as being tiny but, theoretically, there is no reason they can’t be as big as a galaxy.
These dark matter candidates, known as macros, would form heavier particles some ranging from planet-to-bullet sized.
While macros would be much rarer than weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPs), any collisions with ordinary matter would be violent, leaving an obvious trace.
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What is dark matter?
Dark matter emits no light and cannot be directly observed.
The mysterious substance is not clouds of normal matter, known as baryons, as it would otherwise be detectable via light.
Dark matter is also not antimatter, which annihilates matter on contact.
And although there is a chance black holes could be involved in creating dark matter, it is not composed of black holes.
Dark matter composed of black holes would create more gravitation al lensing than astronomers have detected.