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Author Topic: Dark Mystery in Hunt for Secrets of Dark Matter  (Read 833 times) Average Rating: 0
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Justin Kissel
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« on: August 12, 2007, 11:12:24 PM »

Dark Mystery in Hunt for Secrets of Dark Matter

"In deep underground laboratories around the globe, a high-tech race is on to spot dark matter, the invisible cosmic glue that's believed to keep galaxies from spinning apart. The first to discover the nature of dark matter would solve one of modern science's greatest mysteries and be a shoo-in for the Nobel Prize.

Yet it's more than just a brainy exercise. Deciphering dark matter — along with a better understanding of another mysterious force called dark energy — could help reveal the fate of the universe. Previous hunts for the hypothetical matter have turned up nothing, but that has not deterred some two dozen research teams from plumbing the darkness of idled mines and tunnel shafts for a fleeting glimpse.

Dark-matter detecting machines today are more powerful than previous generations, but even the best has failed so far to catch a whiff of the stuff. Many teams are now building bigger detectors or toying with novel technologies to aid in the hunt. 'We're in the golden age of dark matter search,' said Sean Carroll, a Cal Tech theoretical physicist who has no role in the experiments.

'It's looking good for some breakthroughs to happen.' Scientists admittedly are still in the dark about dark matter. The prevailing theory is that it's made up of tiny, exotic particles left over from the Big Bang some 13.7 billion years ago. Dark matter, thought to make up a quarter of the universe's mass, gets its name because it doesn't give off light or heat. Astronomers know it exists because of its gravitational tug-of-war with stars and galaxies..."
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« Reply #1 on: August 13, 2007, 12:24:29 PM »

I used to go to class 2 stories above a Dark Matter experiment chamber, in the Rockafeller Building at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland.  We joked that the experiment had the residual effect of making time seem like it was going slower, so the first 15 minutes of lecture seemed like over an hour (and we were all ready to go home).
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"The man who doesn't read good books has no advantage over the one who can't read them." Mark Twain
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« Reply #2 on: August 13, 2007, 12:51:38 PM »

Thanks for the link.  I'll be sure to read it.

Ebor
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"I wish they would remember that the charge to Peter was "Feed my sheep", not "Try experiments on my rats", or even "Teach my performing dogs new tricks". - C. S. Lewis

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