More news on dark matter this week: By analyzing light from dwarf galaxies that orbit the Milky Way, scientists believe they have discovered the minimum mass for galaxies in the universe a€“ 10 million times the mass of the sun. The smallest known galaxies, called dwarf galaxies, vary greatly in brightness, from 1,000 times the luminosity of the sun to 10 million times the luminosity of the sun. The researchers expected the masses to vary, with the brightest galaxy weighing the most and the faintest galaxy weighing the least.
Manoj Kaplinghat, a study co-author and physics and astronomy assistant professor at UCI, explains this finding using an analogy in which humans play the role of dark matter.
Since dwarf galaxies are mostly dark matter a€“ the ratio of dark matter to normal matter is as large as 10,000 to one a€“ the minimum-mass discovery reveals a fundamental property of dark matter.
Scientists hope to learn about dark mattera€™s microscopic properties when the Large Hadron Collider in Switzerland becomes operational later this year. Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email. This mass could be the smallest known a€?building blocka€? of the mysterious, invisible substance called dark matter.

But surprisingly all dwarf galaxies had the same mass a€“ 10 million times the mass of the sun.
The device will accelerate two beams of nuclei in a ring in opposite directions and then slam them together to recreate conditions just after the Big Bang. Previously she served as UT's Senior Editor and lead writer, and has worked with Astronomy Cast and 365 Days of Astronomy. Although, there is a very important conclusion which remains unstated: Galaxies MUST have Dark Matter. The brightest galaxies would have the least amount of hydrogen obscuring the starlight, and the dimmer galaxies would have more hydrogen. Scientists know how dark mattera€™s gravity attracts normal matter and causes galaxies to form. UCI scientists studied 18 of them using data obtained with the Keck telescope in Hawaii and the Magellan telescope in Chile, with the goal of calculating their masses. By doing this, scientists hope to create the dark matter particle in the lab for the first time.

The authors go on to point out this result may have resulted from Hot DM (rather than the more commonly used Cold Dark Matter [CDM] model commonly used by astrophysicists. Scientists know very little about the microscopic properties of dark matter, even though it accounts for approximately five-sixths of all matter in the universe. They also suspect that small galaxies merge over time to create larger galaxies such as our Milky Way.
By analyzing starsa€™ light in each galaxy, they determined how fast the stars were moving. In either case, I think this finding is trying to tell us something important about our universe and how it works.

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