The scientific community is discussing a new, ultra-technological way to detect dark matter. Especially for Hi-Tech Mail.ru, the Russian expert told what this method is and whether it will be possible with its help for the first time to see […]
The scientific community is discussing a new, ultra-technological way to detect dark matter. Especially for Hi-Tech Mail.ru, the Russian expert told what this method is and whether it will be possible with its help for the first time to see the most “incomprehensible and unknown entity” in the Universe.
Researchers at the University of Chicago and their colleagues have recently developed new devices based on bits of quantum computing. Such a technique, according to scientists, allows you to search for dark matter 1,000 times faster than any previous methods.
Dark matter is the great mystery of the universe
“There is some completely incomprehensible and unexplored essence – dark matter. So far, no one knows exactly what it is and how to see it. It is known that dark matter has a low density, it fills the space between galaxies and bends space-time with its mass “
When a scientist says that no one can “see” dark matter, this means that it does not interact with electromagnetic waves in any way, or interacts, but very weakly, therefore, it is impossible to record this with the help of existing detectors.
“There is a standard model with its gauge bosons, leptons, quarks and their constituent particles. So with these particles, everything is more or less clear. There are also very weakly interacting with light particles – neutrinos. They, as a rule, calmly fly right through our planet. Even we can sometimes see them (for this we need containers with water or ice), but they have nothing to do with dark matter, ”the Russian specialist continues.
According to the scientist, one of the candidates for the role of dark matter is a hypothetical elementary particle called an axion. It is assumed that axions should decay into pairs of photons. But what if the axion has a very low mass? In this case, it will be very difficult to detect photons – you will need special detectors, for example, qubits.
Superconducting qubits work at very low temperatures, and they are able to interact with the electromagnetic field in a quantum way, rather than the waves that people are familiar with from television or microwave ovens.
It’s too early to talk about a breakthrough
It would seem that the great mystery of physics is almost close to being solved – the devices created by scientists will “see” the particles of dark matter and make it possible to learn more about the Universe. But it’s not that simple. It should be understood that the issue of dark matter is very difficult, because no one fully knows what exactly one has to deal with.
“In this whole story, I personally do not understand why, in fact, dark matter should consist of light axions? This assumption is very strong. It is quite possible that the axions have nothing to do with it, and the whole point is in other particles, which differ in mass from the frequency ranges available to qubits, ”Besedin notes.
According to the scientist, the experiment with qubits is like looking for a needle in a haystack, only no one has any idea how big the needle is, or whether it is a needle at all. Do not be surprised if you cannot find light axions in this way. Nevertheless, the specialist notes that the development of researchers at the University of Chicago is quite interesting, and if the scientific community still manages to discover light axions, it will be fantastic.