New Antimatter Experiment at Large Hadron Collider Will Help With the Search for Dark Matter

Underground ALICE Detector

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A view of the underground ALICE detector utilized in the research study of the antideuteron Credit: CERN

The ALICE partnership has actually provided brand-new outcomes on the production rates of antideuterons based upon information gathered at the greatest crash energy provided up until now at the Large Hadron Collider. The antideuteron is made up of an antiproton and an antineutron. The brand-new measurements are necessary since the existence of antideuterons in area is an appealing indirect signature of dark matter prospects. The results mark an advance in the look for dark matter.

Recent astrophysical and cosmological outcomes point towards dark matter being the dominant type of matter in deep space, representing around 85% of all matter. The nature of dark matter stays an excellent secret, and breaking its tricks would open a brand-new door for physics.

Detecting antideuterons in area might be an indirect signature of dark matter, given that they might be produced throughout the annihilation or decay of neutralinos or sneutrinos, which are theoretical dark matter particles.

Various experiments are on the hunt for antideuterons in the Universe, consisting of the AMS detector on the International Space Station. However, prior to presuming the presence of dark matter from the detection of these nuclei, researchers need to represent both their rates of production by other sources (particularly, accidents in between cosmic rays and nuclei in the interstellar medium) and the rates of their annihilation triggered by coming across matter on their journey. In order to assert that the spotted antideuteron is connected to the existence of dark matter, the production and annihilation rates need to be well comprehended.

By clashing protons in the LHC, ALICE researchers simulated antideuteron production through cosmic ray accidents, and might therefore determine the production rate related to this phenomenon. These measurements offer a basic basis for modeling antideuteron production procedures in area. By comparing the quantity of antideuterons spotted with that of their matter equivalents (deuterons, which do not wipe out in the detector), they had the ability to figure out, for the very first time, the annihilation possibility of low-energy antideuterons.

These measurements will add to future antideuteron research studies in the Earth’s area, and assist physicists figure out whether they are signatures of the existence of dark matter particles, or if on the contrary, they are symptoms of recognized phenomena.

In the future, these kinds of research studies at ALICE might be encompassed much heavier antinuclei. “The LHC and the ALICE experiment represent a unique facility to study antimatter nuclei,” states ALICE Spokesperson Luciano Musa. “This research will continue to provide a crucial reference for the interpretation of future astrophysical dark matter searches.”


“Measurement of the low-energy antideuteron inelastic cross section” by ALICE Collaboration, 22 May 2020, Nuclear Experiment. 2005.11122

“(Anti-)Deuteron production in pp collisions at s√=13 TeV” by ALICE Collaboration, 6 March 2020, Nuclear Experiment. 2003.03184

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