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Earth: In the Dark on Matter

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darkmatter

Dark Matter is a term used to describe matter that can be inferred to exist from its gravitational effects, but does not emit or absorb detectable amounts of light, is not a planet, star, gas, dust or protons or neutrons, . It is mainly an invisible force which is under scientific investigation and is said to have formed in a fraction of a second from the beginning of the big bang.

It has been reported that there is a possibility that Dark Matter walls may exist within the Universe and that at some point Earth may drift through these gigantic walls or may have been doing so already.

Scientists are looking forward to detecting these walls made of the infamous Dark Matter which are said to make up about 86% of all matter within the Universe.

The New Scientist generated an article entitled “Is Earth Bashing through walls of Dark Matter?” and sets out in the article the possibility that Earth may be subjected to exotic force fields made up of Dark Matter which the Earth is bashed by.

colorful_earth-wallpaper-1920x1080

Not much is known about Dark Matter although it has certainly become the subject of much attention amongst Physicists and Science fanatics. The Dark Matter is believed to be made up of Weakly Interacting Massive Particles, this is the leading and most prominent theory about, on Dark Matter, however, there has been no detection of these WIMPs to date. “We’ve looked for WIMP Dark Matter in so many ways, at some point you have to ask, are we totally on the wrong track?”

So Scientists have been open to this new theory (exotic fields/walls of Dark Matter) that would be a breakthrough if detected and discovered. So how do Scientists intend to go about detecting these exotic walls? The theory suggests that the Earth passes through these walls every few years as it drifts through space, as yet it has not been detected, but this all looks to change with a focus on using magnetometer technology, to try and discover when the Earth has passed through one of these walls.

This is an open-minded theory and not everyone is sure about the existence of these walls, which are said to be rich in energy.

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In the New Scientist magazine, a quote from Scientist Maxim Pospelov of the University of Victoria – Canada says “I feel like it’s time to broaden the scope of our search”, they report further on Mr Pospelov saying “He is focusing on the idea that some dark matter may be tied up in domain walls – structures separating areas of the universe where an exotic force field in the early cosmos settled down with different values.” It is these values that are said to be distinct and in order for them to remain special they must be rich in energy, which is a fascinating prospect for the future of science discovery.

“Earth may pass through a domain wall every few years as it drifts through space. We wouldn’t feel it”, says Pospelov.  The New Scientist features a piece from the ‘Physical Review Letters’ : “but if a worldwide network of magnetometers simultaneously saw an unusual signal, it could signify that Earth has pierced a dark matter wall.”

Evidence for Dark Matter is:

“Observations of the rotational speed of spiral galaxies, the confinement of hot gas in galaxies and clusters of galaxies, the random motions of galaxies in clusters, the gravitational lensing of background objects, and the observed fluctuations in the cosmic microwave background radiation require the presence of additional gravity, which can be explained by the existence of dark matter.” Source: Chandra/NASA

NASA provides one take on the Universe Dark Matter and Dark Energy it says:

By fitting a theoretical model of the composition of the Universe to the combined set of cosmological observations, scientists have come up with the composition that ~70% is dark energy, ~25% is dark matter, and ~5% is normal matter.”

NASA’s understanding of Dark Energy is also a wonderful one, they explain that Dark Energy is the force that is accelerating the universe to expansion and this is depicted in the following diagram by NASA:darkmatterdiagram

Dark Energy is again a hot topic of discussion and like Dark Matter there is no definitive explanation about how they work, here, however is NASA’s take on Dark Energy:

“In the early 1990’s, one thing was fairly certain about the expansion of the Universe. It might have enough energy density to stop its expansion and recollapse, it might have so little energy density that it would never stop expanding, but gravity was certain to slow the expansion as time went on. Granted, the slowing had not been observed, but, theoretically, the Universe had to slow. The Universe is full of matter and the attractive force of gravity pulls all matter together. Then came 1998 and the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) observations of very distant supernovae that showed that, a long time ago, the Universe was actually expanding more slowly than it is today. So the expansion of the Universe has not been slowing due to gravity, as everyone thought, it has been accelerating. No one expected this, no one knew how to explain it. But something was causing it.

Eventually theorists came up with three sorts of explanations. Maybe it was a result of a long-discarded version of Einstein’s theory of gravity, one that contained what was called a “cosmological constant.” Maybe there was some strange kind of energy-fluid that filled space. Maybe there is something wrong with Einstein’s theory of gravity and a new theory could include some kind of field that creates this cosmic acceleration. Theorists still don’t know what the correct explanation is, but they have given the solution a name. It is called dark energy.”

darkenergywhatispiechart(Most of the universe seems to consist of nothing we can see. Dark energy and dark matter, detectable only because of their effect on the visible matter around them, make up most of the universe.) SOURCE NASA

Here’s NASA’s take on Dark Matter:

“We are much more certain what dark matter is not than we are what it is. First, it is dark, meaning that it is not in the form of stars and planets that we see. Observations show that there is far too little visible matter in the Universe to make up the 25% required by the observations. Second, it is not in the form of dark clouds of normal matter, matter made up of particles called baryons. We know this because we would be able to detect baryonic clouds by their absorption of radiation passing through them. Third, dark matter is not antimatter, because we do not see the unique gamma rays that are produced when antimatter annihilates with matter. Finally, we can rule out large galaxy-sized black holes on the basis of how many gravitational lenses we see. High concentrations of matter bend light passing near them from objects further away, but we do not see enough lensing events to suggest that such objects to make up the required 25% dark matter contribution.

However, at this point, there are still a few dark matter possibilities that are viable. Baryonic matter could still make up the dark matter if it were all tied up in brown dwarfs or in small, dense chunks of heavy elements. These possibilities are known as massive compact halo objects, or “MACHO’s”. But the most common view is that dark matter is not baryonic at all, but that it is made up of other, more exotic particles like axions or WIMPS – Weakly Interacting Massive Particles.”

Dark Matter will be like something that has never been seen before and it may assist in further understand time, space, and matter.

The latest in Dark Matter investigations is looking at exploding gamma rays, which are apparently caused by two concentrated clouds of dark matter colliding. Nothing as yet is conclusive on this subject and further Science investigations will have to take place before some light is shed on Dark Matter and Dark Matter walls!

darkmatterwallsthroughearth

Additional Links:

Did Albert Einstein predict Dark Energy?

http://hubblesite.org/hubble_discoveries/dark_energy/de-did_einstein_predict.php

One Response

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  1. Super article, intriguing and informative, J R M

    Anonymous

    February 4, 2013 at 6:42 pm


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