Better defining the signals left by as-yet-undefined dark matter at the LHC

In the quest for dark matter, physicists rely on particle colliders such as the LHC in CERN, located near Geneva, Switzerland. The trouble is: physicists still don't exactly know what dark matter is. Indeed, they can only see its effect in the form of gravity. Until now, theoretical physicists have used models based on a simple, abstract description of the interaction between dark matter and ordinary particles, such as the Effective Field Theories (EFTs). However, until we observe dark matter, it is impossible to know whether or not these models neglect some key signals. Now, the high energy physics community has come together to develop a set of simplified models, which retain the elegance of EFT-style models yet provide a better description of the signals of dark matter, at the LHC.

These developments are described in a review published in EPJ C by Andrea De Simone and Thomas Jacques from the International School for Advanced Studies SISSA, in Trieste, Italy.

EFT models offer the advantage of helping to define a structured approach to identify exactly what they are looking for in the quest for dark matter. They also help to combine results from several dark matter search experiments in a straightforward manner.

In this paper the authors describe an evolution of the EFT approach, referred to as 'simplified models', that yield signals not found in the EFT description. They can also be used together with other search methods for dark matter, such as indirect detection and direct detection. By comparing constraints from as many experiments as possible, this new approach makes it possible to combine the strongest constraints in the search for dark matter.

The more experimental results are gained from particle collisions at the LHC, the more we learn about the nature of interactions. Theorists can then use this data to continue developing simplified models by defining the new and unique signatures on which to focus the search.


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More information: Andrea De Simone et al, Simplified models vs. effective field theory approaches in dark matter searches, The European Physical Journal C (2016). DOI: 10.1140/epjc/s10052-016-4208-4
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Citation: Better defining the signals left by as-yet-undefined dark matter at the LHC (2016, July 26) retrieved 23 May 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-07-left-as-yet-undefined-dark-lhc.html
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Jul 28, 2016
Why does dark matter have to be particulate?

Jul 28, 2016
Why does dark matter have to be particulate?

It doesn't (don't get hung up on the 'matter' part of the label). That's just a the first obvious place to look because it causes gravitational effects and there is only one thing we currently know of which has such effects: matter.

No scientist is categorically excluding other possibilities. E.g. these:
https://en.wikipe...theories
(though the current MOND flavors either do require some type of matter or have other problems not easily resolved)

But currently no one has found out how to test the more extreme of these (like extra dimensions and space fractality). The theories that do contain a massive particle are easier to test for (or exclude).

Jul 29, 2016
Why does dark matter have to be particulate?

It doesn't (don't get hung up on the 'matter' part of the label). That's just a the first obvious place to look because it causes gravitational effects and there is only one thing we currently know of which has such effects: matter.
Appears to be a misunderstanding of gravitational effects. Or more likely gravity itself. I cringe when I read that general relativity explains gravity. I see GR as describing gravitational effects - not explaining anything. Probably why so many people don't believe in it. Gravity actually comes in two effects - Newtonian and relativistic. Describing Newtonian gravity as curved or warped spacetime may look good in museum demonstrations of orbiting objects but it appears to me as a misapplication of the idea of a gravitational potential well.

Jul 29, 2016
[cont]
In other words curved of warped spacetime is a relativistic effect, not Newtonian.

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