Skip to comments.Scientists proud of dark matter study that turns up nothing
Posted on 11/12/2013 6:08:01 PM PST by Tailgunner Joe
Scientists at the Homestake Gold Mine in South Dakota running the biggest, most sensitive dark matter detector yet released its first round of results yesterday -- and they found nothing. The Large Underground Xenon dark matter experiment, or LUX, consists of a vat of 368 kilograms of liquid xenon to minus 110 degrees Celsius, surrounded by a tank of water. LUX sits 4,850 feet underground at the old mine, shielded from cosmic rays.
An international team of researchers watched for three months to see if any WIMPS -- weakly interacting massive particles -- would pass through the rock and reveal themselves by interacting with the xenon, as predicted by previous experiments.
But they discovered nothing -- and scientists on the team are proud of how little they saw.
"In 25 years of searching, this is the cleanest signal I've seen," said Richard Gaitskell, physicist and researcher on the team.
The discovery of nothing is significant in that, if confirmed, it would rule out one theory about dark matter, which astronomers have said makes up a quarter of the cosmos.
So far scientists are more clear on what dark matter isn't, rather than what it is, and now they know it isn't high-mass WIMPS, as LUX should have detected more than a thousand such particles.
The LUX experiment will run through all of next year. Researchers will next move to add another factor of sensitivity to the device, and run the experiment again.
Just because we dont see anything in the first run doesnt mean we wont see anything in the second, Gaitskell said.
If it makes up a quarter of the cosmos, you would think it would be abundantly apparent.
Finding nothing. Sounds like Obama’s kind of science project.
It may be abundant, but that doesn’t make it any more detectable by our limited technology.
lol, I thought it was the Onion.
The dark matter is between their ears!
Cosmic warming! Oh noezzz!
“In 25 years of searching, this is the cleanest signal I’ve seen,”
Next time, turn on the instrumentation?
They're saying the same thing about the Obamacare website.
They did all this in a dark room, no?
It didn’t produce nothing; far from it! This study produced huge grant checks that the “scientists” can live well off of for several years!
Multiuniverse Theory, String Theory, Dark Matter... these things are better described as theology.
The dark matter is the most succulent part of the bird.
Yeah well.. we know that there’s Dark Matter in the WH, but it’s not meaninngfully detectable without a teleprompter.
Say, can one get a grant for that?
Dark matter is a mathematical construct that is used by certain cosmologists to fill in the blanks of the work they’ve done on the shoulders of others to explain what they cannot.
This is no more news than the groom failing to show at a royal wedding.
I’m very science and religion oriented. The thing about M-Theory (strings) is that the mathematics are so deeply compelling. And it connects with General Relativity so well re, the current state of the universe. It would be a real shame to throw it over now. And I don’t say that lightly, but with the utmost gravity...for the situation, that is.
Which tells me that it’s an attempt to patch a fundamentally flawed underlying theory, which is what I’ve thought all along about “dark matter.”
I usually have dark matter at Thanksgiving.....
Without disagreeing it could be more fun to let dark matter, matter which is invisible, exist and to have started life in a dark matter pond on a dark matter planet and to have evolved..... because then we could have an explanation for all the various otherworldly phenomena.......
Just rooting for scientific anarchy.....
They would have used this collector of dark particulate matter, but Nature abhors a vacuum ....
String Theory has such a cult following...that I figured I'd swim counter to the current, and I read this, which you may also like:
Most likely is that the current model, the entropic universe, is a false model. A workable model, to be sure, but not necessarily “true”. After all it doesn’t work in the chem lab. That’s called a clue. And when one of your “best” theories (multiuniverse) cannot under any circumstances be verified.... what are we paying for? Still, it ensures a never ending supply of grant money for fancy toys and fat salaries and bonuses which is the real goal.
It is nonetheless an interesting result, IIRC, WIMPS was one of the favorite candidates, maybe its the MACHOs?
“And I dont say that lightly, but with the utmost gravity...for the situation, that is.”
I see what you did there. :)
Does it matter?
As an adult I have anxiety whenever I hear a vacuum cleaner running. It’s attributed to triggers formulated in my childhood. You see, whenever Mom was pissed off she would run the Electrolux. I was very attuned to the tension and how she would clamp her lips between her teeth in the “Mom is pissed off again” expression she has, banding the wand into every table leg and piece of furniture. It turns out she hated the Electrolux because it was so heavy, but she had to have it because that’s what her sister had.
10 years ago she finally got one of those 7lb Oreck XL units... but the damage is done. Just the sound of any vacuum cleaner triggers a flight response... like when I visit home and Dad gets out the vacuum and cleans aroundnthe litter box after scooping cat turds... oh, man, I have to go outside the house... weird but it is what it is.