Scientists recently detected dark matter residing around galaxies that have existed for around 12 billion years. The discovery of this mysterious and vital universal substance has made it the earliest detected dark matter yet. Further, the discovery suggests that dark matter in our early universe was much less “clumpy” than we originally predicted.
Scientists just found the earliest detected dark matter yet
Finding dark matter around galaxies isn’t exactly a new thing. This mysterious substance is crucial to the many models that govern the expansion and functioning of our universe. This discovery challenges some things that we believed we knew about the origins of dark matter.
On top of being the earliest detected dark matter yet, the discovery could change our understanding of how galaxies evolve entirely. It could also suggest that the fundamental rules governing galaxies formed in the early universe are different than newer galaxies.
Although there is still much to be confirmed, it’s a good start in expanding that direction. The findings were achieved by a collaboration led by researchers at Japan’s Nagoya University. They published those findings in Physical Review Letters.
Dark matter rules
Finding the earliest detection of dark matter is a good discovery, though. And it isn’t something that came easily. The location of most dark matter studies around distant galaxies has remained the same for many years. That’s because, beyond a certain point, scientists cannot detect dark matter as it is hard to detect the distortion dark matter causes.
This makes it more difficult to see dark matter around galaxies. It has also made it more challenging to understand dark matter in old galaxies. Researchers may now have a better method to find dark matter in early universe galaxies.
To find out the most recent detections of dark matter, researchers used observations from the Subaru Hyper Suprime-Cam Survey. First, the team identified 1. 5 million lens galaxies with visible light. These galaxies were all selected to be seen 12 billion years ago, a press release notes.
From there the team started using microwaves from CMB (cosmic microwave background). The radiation residue from the Big Bang allowed them to measure how the dark matter around the lens galaxies distorted the microwaves. They were able to find the first detection of dark matter that we have ever made.
For now, though, we’ll need to wait for more research to confirm these findings. If they succeed, however, this could open up new avenues for understanding dark matter, and the basic rules that led to early universe galaxies.
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