Dark matter dominates in nearby dwarf galaxy

November 18, 2015 by Lori Dajose
Dwarf galaxies have few stars but lots of dark matter. This Caltech FIRE (Feedback in Realistic Environments) simulation from shows the predicted distribution of stars (left) and dark matter (right) around a galaxy like the Milky Way. The red circle shows a dwarf galaxy like Triangulum II. Although it has a lot of dark matter, it has very few stars. Dark matter-dominated galaxies like Triangulum II are excellent prospects for detecting the gamma-ray signal from dark matter self-annihilation. Credit: A. Wetzel and P. Hopkins, Caltech

Dark matter is called "dark" for a good reason. Although they outnumber particles of regular matter by more than a factor of 10, particles of dark matter are elusive. Their existence is inferred by their gravitational influence in galaxies, but no one has ever directly observed signals from dark matter. Now, by measuring the mass of a nearby dwarf galaxy called Triangulum II, Assistant Professor of Astronomy Evan Kirby may have found the highest concentration of dark matter in any known galaxy.

Triangulum II is a small, faint galaxy at the edge of the Milky Way, made up of only about 1,000 stars. Kirby measured the mass of Triangulum II by examining the velocity of six stars whipping around the galaxy's center. "The galaxy is challenging to look at," he says. "Only six of its stars were luminous enough to see with the Keck telescope." By measuring these stars' velocity, Kirby could infer the gravitational force exerted on the stars and thereby determine the mass of the galaxy.

"The total mass I measured was much, much greater than the mass of the total number of stars—implying that there's a ton of densely packed dark matter contributing to the total mass," Kirby says. "The ratio of dark matter to luminous matter is the highest of any galaxy we know. After I had made my measurements, I was just thinking—wow."

Triangulum II could thus become a leading candidate for efforts to directly detect the signatures of dark matter. Certain particles of dark matter, called supersymmetric WIMPs (weakly interacting massive particles), will annihilate one another upon colliding and produce gamma rays that can then be detected from Earth.

While current theories predict that dark matter is producing gamma rays almost everywhere in the universe, detecting these particular signals among other galactic noises, like gamma rays emitted from pulsars, is a challenge. Triangulum II, on the other hand, is a very quiet galaxy. It lacks the gas and other material necessary to form stars, so it isn't forming new stars—astronomers call it "dead." Any gamma ray signals coming from colliding would theoretically be clearly visible.

It hasn't been definitively confirmed, though, that what Kirby measured is actually the total mass of the galaxy. Another group, led by researchers from the University of Strasbourg in France, measured the velocities of stars just outside Triangulum II and found that they are actually moving faster than the stars closer into the galaxy's center—the opposite of what's expected. This could suggest that the little galaxy is being pulled apart, or "tidally disrupted," by the Milky Way's gravity.

"My next steps are to make measurements to confirm that other group's findings," Kirby says. "If it turns out that those outer aren't actually moving faster than the inner ones, then the galaxy could be in what's called dynamic equilibrium. That would make it the most excellent candidate for detecting with ."

A paper describing this research appears in the November 17 issue of the Astrophysical Journal Letters. Judith Cohen (PhD '71), the Kate Van Nuys Page Professor of Astronomy, is a Caltech coauthor.

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Bulbuzor
3.2 / 5 (9) Nov 18, 2015
I can hear darko-skpetics running this way
Bulbuzor
1.9 / 5 (7) Nov 18, 2015
Tho, did their model take the MW's and other close galaxies' tidal pulls into account for determining the part they could play for the stars' speed? Also, is 6 a sample size big enough in cosmology to make this kind of claim?
RealityCheck
2.5 / 5 (8) Nov 18, 2015
Hi Bulbuzor. :)

I long ago pointed out the extreme GIGO potential of applying 'statistical analysis techniques' to such temporally/spatially limited datasets/observations. At no stage of the above 'analysis/conclusions' id the team actually have enough data/observation to identify the whole path of the target stars' motions. It is therefore unreliable and unscientific to make such correlations/claims between star speeds and LSB mass content (be it ordinary matter or HYPOTHESIZED 'dark matter'). It is likely that the stars are in elliptical 'orbits' which may be 'closed/open'. Stars observed may show high velocity because they approaching 'peri-centre' segment of overall velocity/path profile. The study uses a couple days worth of observations and then extrapolating/analyzing that scant dataset to 'within an inch of it's life'! Not science. Just speculation via 'sciency sounding' GIGO 'exercises' of no merit. Publish or Perish at it again? Like in BICEP2 GIGO 'exercise'?

ctd
GSwift7
3.3 / 5 (8) Nov 18, 2015
to Bulbuzor:

That's exactly what the end of the article is suggesting. I am guessing that the guy in the article has jumped the gun here, and what he is claiming will not survive peer review and follow-up observations. But, I'm just guessing, so... I guess we will have to wait and see. Maybe this is just a clever ploy to get some kind of observation he's looking for, but doesn't have telescope time to get? Something just doesn't seem right here, since the article itself seems to provide contrary evidence for his claims.

As it stands, I wouldn't get worked up about this article. It seems like a non-starter to me.

Edit: RealityCheck and I were posting at the same time. I totally agree with him, but the guy in the above story surely knows that his argument is weak. This just doesn't add up for me. Something is out of context or not being presented correctly, maybe? Whatever. Just don't take this article too seriously.
RealityCheck
1.3 / 5 (6) Nov 18, 2015
ctd...

As for any assumption/conclusion that added 'dark matter' mass/graviy component must be what keeps the stellar nova/supernova 'products' wind content within the LSB locality and not lost to intergalactic space, it obviously hasn't occurred to them to consult their colleugues who have discovered great electro-magnetic phenomena/fields/flows within and around galaxies of all sizes. If they had, then they would have realized that, since such stellar winds would consist of ionized particles/plasma features/dynamics evolving within such outflows, any galactic electro-magnetic dynamics might overcome local velocity/gravitic factors so as to constrain much of said 'plasmic' nova/supernova wind 'content' to return/remain within the parent LSB feature electro-dynamics/gravity system overall, and so not be lost to intergalactic space. Which would make their assumption/conclusion of hypothesized 'dark matter' gravity being 'needed', and therefore 'present', unnecessary! :)
viko_mx
2.1 / 5 (9) Nov 18, 2015
Or may be properties of the vacuum of space there are slightly different than the vacuum properties tuned in our visinity. There is no need of dark mater. Theer is need for real objective sciece and new fundamental theories more adecuate to relity.
gkam
1.4 / 5 (13) Nov 18, 2015
Dark matter is extradimensional.
wduckss
3.4 / 5 (5) Nov 19, 2015
The modest data suggest that it is not about galaxy, already star cluster, where the stars in the center of is spinning slower than outer stars. Object size does not indicate the existence of a central body.
viko_mx
3 / 5 (9) Nov 19, 2015
"Dark matter is extradimensional."

How came to this conclusion? Dreaming it? Did scientists ever seen extra dimensions with scientific experimets?
jsdarkdestruction
4.6 / 5 (9) Nov 19, 2015
Viko
Have you ever seen the properties in the vacuum are not the same everywhere? What experimental evidence do you have?

just because we haven't detected extra dimensions yet doesn't mean we can never do so.
viko_mx
2.6 / 5 (9) Nov 19, 2015
""Have you ever seen the properties in the vacuum are not the same everywhere? What experimental evidence do you have?"

Yes. Data from cosmic observations give quite clear picture of that fact. It shows to us a physical reality that significantly diverge from the postulates and extrapolations of our officially adopted by consensus theories. And demonstrate different tunes of the physical properties of the vacuum of space in the different zones in the universe. which makes the universe unknowable to us if we observing it only from the Earth.

Gigel
4.4 / 5 (7) Nov 19, 2015
Yes. Data from cosmic observations give quite clear picture of that fact.


Some articles about this?
Zzzzzzzz
3.2 / 5 (9) Nov 19, 2015
guys - ignoring viko has made my experience on this site better - you should try it
Bulbuzor
1 / 5 (1) Nov 19, 2015
Hahaha RC, I didn't know that GIGO was an international slang, I thought it was just my funky biostats teacher being funky I'm reassured to see that I am not the only one thinking that n=6 is… limiting. Hopefully he gets an increase in time allocation to be able to look further into it, or even better, that independent researchers get to the same conclusion. Who knows, he might be onto something, it sure is an intriguing pre-sampling.

As for any assumption/conclusion that added 'dark matter' mass/graviy component must be what keeps the stellar nova/supernova 'products' wind content within the LSB locality and not lost to intergalactic space


Wasn't DM mostly added into our models to account for the missing gravity which would hold galaxies together?
bschott
3.6 / 5 (7) Nov 19, 2015
Wasn't DM mostly added into our models to account for the missing gravity which would hold galaxies together?


Not mostly, solely. The issue is that it's non existence means that it isn't gravity that holds galaxies together. Rather than accept this, and all of the observational evidence that supports it, the scientific method appears to be to assume that it does exist until every possible means of finding it have been exhausted at great expense and time wasted doing so.

I'd hate to have to answer for that.

bschott
3.1 / 5 (8) Nov 19, 2015
Certain particles of dark matter, called supersymmetric WIMPs (weakly interacting massive particles), will annihilate one another upon colliding and produce gamma rays that can then be detected from Earth.
While current theories predict that dark matter is producing gamma rays almost everywhere in the universe,


OK, so it is undetectable in the Em spectrum, apparently until it annihilates, which all of a sudden somehow allows it to produce an EM energy signature in the form of a Gamma ray.

4/5 of the matter in the universe has no EM signature until it contacts itself and it can then produce energy at gamma frequencies. The word "will" is used in the quote above as though this is a proven phenomenon.

Credibility zero. Along with that of anyone who supports this rediculous hogwash. There is no physics that supports this, math is not physics.

Bulbuzor
3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 19, 2015
@Bschott

If we start with the fact that galaxies would not hold together solely with the observable matter, among other issues we'd face with the sole effect of matter and classical physics, which one of the following is the least speculative option to solve this problem :

A. An undetectable matter, with similar gravitational effects the regular matter that despite being undetectable has an array of cosmological effects that it explains brilliantly with no need for exotic physics. We can use an analogy to neutrinos here, we never detected directly a single neutrino despite you have 10,000 of them going through your nail every second, yet we know for a fact (for that one) it exists.

B. An unknown cosmological force drives all of the effects we accredited to DM, which we know nothing about and might not even implement itself in our model of the universe.

C. We know nothing, John Snow. (i.e.: the whole of our cosmological model is erroneous and needs to be changed)
bschott
2.5 / 5 (8) Nov 19, 2015
Bulbozer - If you trust that the mainstream is correct regarding gravity, you will be able to believe option A as long as you want to without ever finding a DM particle. You can even found the church of DM if you so desire and you will have tons of followers....for awhile anyways.

If you begin to distrust the mainstream is correct about DM and don't know anything about applied physics then you are left with option C.

If you are religious and know nothing about applied physics your world is option B.

If you understand magnetic fields, how energy/particles interact with them, how they structure and amplify when configured in certain ways and that space is 3 dimensional volume and not a fabric with time woven into it, well then you are on your way to understanding the universe as it exists in reality.

We live in an EM environment, as does everything else in the universe.
my2cts
2.3 / 5 (3) Nov 19, 2015

OK, so it is undetectable in the Em spectrum, apparently until it annihilates, which all of a sudden somehow allows it to produce an EM energy signature in the form of a Gamma ray.

You have a point.
Enthusiastic Fool
2.3 / 5 (6) Nov 19, 2015
OK, so it is undetectable in the Em spectrum, apparently until it annihilates, which all of a sudden somehow allows it to produce an EM energy signature in the form of a Gamma ray.


I don't think you have a point. Neutrons are electrically neutral but through beta decay emit an electron or positron.

Because we don't understand the composition of the WIMP, if they exist, does not mean they could not function the way you describe. Finding gravitational lensing is basically us detecting DM in the EM spectrum. Without a theory of quantum gravity can we really establish how G and EM correlate at infinitesimal levels?

Math is not physics but physics is math...
jsdarkdestruction
4.2 / 5 (5) Nov 20, 2015
""Have you ever seen the properties in the vacuum are not the same everywhere? What experimental evidence do you have?"

Yes. Data from cosmic observations give quite clear picture of that fact. It shows to us a physical reality that significantly diverge from the postulates and extrapolations of our officially adopted by consensus theories. And demonstrate different tunes of the physical properties of the vacuum of space in the different zones in the universe. which makes the universe unknowable to us if we observing it only from the Earth.


Which observations specifically show it? Show me data and explain scientifically how it shows what you think it does.
bschott
1.8 / 5 (5) Nov 20, 2015
I don't think you have a point. Neutrons are electrically neutral but through beta decay emit an electron or positron.


You have a table for free neutron absorption and emission lines?

Because we don't understand the composition of the WIMP, if they exist, does not mean they could not function the way you describe


The hypothetical functions of theoretical particles is your counter point?

Finding gravitational lensing is basically us detecting DM in the EM spectrum


Unless it isn't gravity. Lensing is assumed to be caused by gravity for the same reason you assume everything else is. That's why you need DM for your model in the first place.

Without a theory of quantum gravity can we really establish how G and EM correlate at infinitesimal levels?


There is no quantum gravity. Gravity is only observed in the presence of significant mass. it isn't required at "infinitesimal levels".

bschott
2 / 5 (4) Nov 20, 2015
but physics is math


Who told you this? Physics is the real world interaction of energy and fields, period.

Math is used to describe these interactions, that is all.
Enthusiastic Fool
4.3 / 5 (6) Nov 20, 2015
The hypothetical functions of theoretical particles is your counter point?


No, my counterpoint is that it's fairly easy to scoff and ridicule something you don't yet understand. The jury is still out on WIMPs and the Universe is stranger than fiction. Think about the concepts of Quantum Mechanics and how ludicrous they seem. WIMPs are no worse.

Unless it isn't gravity. Lensing is assumed to be caused by gravity for the same reason you assume everything else is. That's why you need DM for your model in the first place.

Eddington showed us gravitational lensing in 1919 as predicted by Einstein. If you have a more explanatory theory I'm all ears.

There is no quantum gravity. Gravity is only observed in the presence of significant mass. it isn't required at "infinitesimal levels".

I'm sure this will be big news to physicists. Write it up and claim your Nobel.
bschott
1 / 5 (2) Nov 23, 2015
No, my counterpoint is that it's fairly easy to scoff and ridicule something you don't yet understand


You should have told us how confused you are instead of the "IF they exist, they COULD function" response then. I understand perfectly that they don't exist.

The jury is still out on WIMPs and the Universe is stranger than fiction


No, and no. WIMP's are theoretical so there is no jury out, they have to be found first, then we'll let the jury have a look. The universe makes perfect sense if you don't over complicate it. That's why words like "confusing", and, "contrary to the model" always show up in mainstream publications.

Think about the concepts of Quantum Mechanics and how ludicrous they seem. WIMPs are no worse.


LOL, yes...mainstream quantum mechanics seem ludicrous. Real quantum mechanics, again make perfect sense. Here's a clue, it's useless if it isn't stable long enough on it's own to make it into an atom.

bschott
1 / 5 (2) Nov 23, 2015

There is no quantum gravity. Gravity is only observed in the presence of significant mass. it isn't required at "infinitesimal levels".

I'm sure this will be big news to physicists. Write it up and claim your Nobel.


Really? Here I thought I was just, again, re-stating observations that we have been long standing in the physics community. Let me re-check:

Yes, gravity is only OBSERVED in the presence of significant mass.

No, quantum gravity has not been OBSERVED yet. And no, it definitely isn't required to be there due to the forces that are acting at that level.

But hey, I'll take a hundred grand for nothing. Puts me in the same boat as Higgs, Hawking and any politician to ever win one.
Captain Stumpy
4 / 5 (4) Nov 23, 2015
I understand perfectly that they don't exist
@bs
then it shouldn't be a problem to get this published with all your supporting evidence (and claim your nobel)
i can't wait to read it [sarc/hyperbole]
yes...mainstream quantum mechanics seem ludicrous. Real quantum mechanics, again make perfect sense
you do know that they're one and the same, right?
interesting...
you DO know that "mainstream QM" is the single most successful theory ever, right?

& yet, you still have no published peer reviewed journal papers to prove yourself...

plus, you do know there is a HUGE difference between the Nobel given to scientists and those given to politicians, right?
I mean, the science Nobel requires evidence... not so much for politicians (see: obama)

and the ONLY way to be "in the same boat as Higgs, Hawking" is to have evidence yourself
none of which has shown up here, BTW
bschott
1 / 5 (2) Nov 23, 2015
I understand perfectly that they don't exist
@bs
then it shouldn't be a problem to get this published with all your supporting evidence (and claim your nobel)
i can't wait to read it


Supporting evidence that they don't exist (facepalm)....once again for the uninitiated reading the comments section here, the only evidence required for something to not exist is the lack of it being found in existence. What "other" evidence is there for somethings non existence Stumpid?

you DO know that "mainstream QM" is the single most successful theory ever, right?


Your belief is admirable. Your opinion is not convincing.

and the ONLY way to be "in the same boat as Higgs, Hawking" is to have evidence yourself
none of which has shown up here


What is the evidence for the presence of "Hawking radiation"?

What is the evidence that the "Higgs boson" confers mass to matter and what is the evidence for the existence of the "Higgs field"?

math...
my2cts
5 / 5 (1) Nov 23, 2015
OK, so it is undetectable in the Em spectrum, apparently until it annihilates, which all of a sudden somehow allows it to produce an EM energy signature in the form of a Gamma ray.


I don't think you have a point. Neutrons are electrically neutral but through beta decay emit an electron or positron.

Annihilation into a pair of photons requires EM coupling.
Neutrons have a detectable magnetic moment. Charge neutrality is not sufficient for not being coupled to the EM field.
It must have been a coincidence that bs had a point. The rest of what he says is nonsense and his debating style is pathetic.
Captain Stumpy
5 / 5 (3) Nov 23, 2015
Supporting evidence that they don't exist (facepalm)
@bs
try re-reading for comprehension
supporting evidence for your POV
Your belief is admirable. Your opinion is not convincing
this is like saying my belief in engines being effective means of transporting heavy objects with wheeled maneuverable conveyances on a paved road is a belief and an opinion
it simply IS (car/truck)
QM is the foundation of a great deal of technological advances... it is the reason you have computers that sit on your lap rather than take up entire rooms like they used to

now, i can understand the argument of singular studies, or not enough evidence
BUT
to dismiss a hypothesis OR Theory without any evidence is equivalent to saying "Nyeah, Nyeah! i have my fingers in my ears & i can't hear you! PTHTHPBTHtt"
especially if the Theory has some evidence observed supporting it (DM)
see also my reply to you here: http://phys.org/n...ity.html
my2cts
4 / 5 (4) Nov 23, 2015
@bs
QM really is the single most successful theory in history.
You probably have a very good case. What, you have nothing?
That is the scientific equivalent of wetting your pants in public.
bschott
1 / 5 (2) Nov 24, 2015
Stump, as usual the diatribe...while totally missing the point.

try re-reading for comprehension
supporting evidence for your POV


An attempted re-word for the blindingly unintelligent Captain Stumpy:

The evidence that DM doesn't exist as a particle, is that we have never found one. We don't have any, none seem to exist anywhere, we cannot detect them despite all of our best efforts.

I don't have to "disprove" it's existence, because it does not exist.

"Nyeah, Nyeah! i have my fingers in my ears & i can't hear you! PTHTHPBTHtt"


This is the most intelligent, genuine thing you have ever said.

this is like saying my belief in engines....


Everything you named can be observed and studied directly, hands on. Your analogy is as rediculous as you. Which is really hard to accomplish.

That is the scientific equivalent of wetting your pants in public.


You and Biff know all about that, we get to see it daily here.

my2cts
3.7 / 5 (3) Nov 24, 2015

You and Biff know all about that, we get to see it daily here.

I know all about that since you are doing this all the time here.
You have to be stupid to attack QM empty handed.
Forget the pants wetting: you are stupid.
bschott
1 / 5 (2) Nov 25, 2015

You and Biff know all about that, we get to see it daily here.

I know all about that since you are doing this all the time here.
You have to be stupid to attack QM empty handed.
Forget the pants wetting: you are stupid.


I would love to have a chat with you about QM. We were over in that thread where i did challenge it and you kinda slinked out like a scared little bitch when it turned out that I was correct.

So what would you like to discuss Miss?
bschott
1 / 5 (2) Nov 25, 2015

You and Biff know all about that, we get to see it daily here.

I know all about that since you are doing this all the time here.
You have to be stupid to attack QM empty handed.
Forget the pants wetting: you are stupid.


I would love to have a chat with you about QM. We were over in that thread where i did challenge it and you kinda slinked out like a scared little bitch when it turned out that I was correct.

So what would you like to discuss Miss?

Also it's QED which is supposedly the "most successful", not QM...if you are going to quote mainstream misinformation accurately...oh wait it's you...NVM about being accurate.
my2cts
5 / 5 (2) Nov 25, 2015

Also it's QED which is supposedly the "most successful", not QM...if you are going to quote mainstream misinformation accurately...oh wait it's you...NVM about being accurate.

I do not care much about quotes and I was not quoting anyone when I say that QM is the single most successful theory ever. You can quote me on that.
Since quotes are probably your only source of knowledge, of which you have less that the average parrot, you should know that QED is often stated to be the most accurate theory ever, not the most successful one.
I decline your offer to actually chat on QM. Although this would look good on your CV it would look bad on mine.
my2cts
5 / 5 (2) Nov 25, 2015
like a scared little bitch

Do you often scare women and then despise them?
Captain Stumpy
5 / 5 (2) Nov 26, 2015
The evidence that DM doesn't exist as a particle, is that we have never found one
@bs
1- i never said DM existed as a particle, nor will i until it is a validated known fact

2- the evidence for DM is through observation (links already sent in the past) - you are the one getting confused between conversations/people, etc (try re-reading, as i said)

3- you stated mainstream QM was not the same as "real QM" which is absolute stupidity-there is no "mainstream vs real", there is only QM (shall i re-quote you?)

4- Quantum mechanics (QM; also known as quantum physics or quantum theory) including quantum field theory
quantum electrodynamics (QED) is the relativistic quantum field theory of electrodynamics
- QED has served as the model and template for all subsequent quantum field theories
using the term QM can include QED in a general sense or audience

5- your hatred makes you blind, but it is fascinating to see the power one can hold over another who is so blind
Captain Stumpy
5 / 5 (2) Nov 26, 2015
@bs cont'd
I don't have to "disprove" it's existence, because it does not exist
you are essentially stating that DM can't exist because we haven't found the particle
this doesn't make sense at all because we have observed anomalies which we attribute to DM
observation is the key here: and the placeholder name for said observed anomalies is DM
this is a major point
... you are ignoring that anomaly for a belief, whereas the DM argument is making predictions and a means of falsification and testing (seeking the particle is one)
until anything is validated, we can't actually say it exists, but the evidence is compelling
far more so than the evidence for an unsubstantiated conjecture
Your analogy
my analogy specifically refers to your comment
Your belief is admirable. Your opinion is not convincing
and the analogy works in that regard
perhaps i should use smaller words? i didn't think i had to be monosyllabic with you, but i shall endeavor to correct that

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