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The Fault in Our (Unaligned) Stars

16 Jul 2020, 17:00 UTC
The Fault in Our (Unaligned) Stars
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Title: Geometric Support for Dark Matter by an Unaligned Einstein Ring in Abell 3827Authors: M. Chen, T. Broadhurst, J. Lim, et al.First Author’s Institution: Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics, The University of ChicagoStatus: Submitted, PreprintPerhaps the greatest and most pressing problem in modern astrophysics is the problem of dark matter. Dark matter is a purported physical substance that emits no electromagnetic radiation and appears to interact only with ordinary matter and itself through gravity. The existence of dark matter is hypothesized in order to explain numerous key observations throughout the universe, most notably:

Galaxy rotation speeds (e.g., Vera Rubin’s work on the velocity of stars in the Milky Way)
Galaxy cluster dynamics (e.g., the Bullet Cluster, “a smoking gun for dark matter”)
Gravitational lensing by galaxies & galaxy clusters
Baryon acoustic oscillations
Anisotropies (deviations from uniformity) in the Cosmic Microwave Background
Unfortunately, despite more than a decade of searching, there has yet to be a definitive detection of particle-like dark matter by any of the numerous laboratory experiments done on Earth (e.g., the XENON1T experiment). It is then natural to wonder, could a solution to the problem of dark matter reside in a new understanding of gravity which avoids invoking ...

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