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Crashing Through Dark Matter Walls

by LiveModern Webmaster last modified Jan 21, 2013 01:04 AM
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by Geoff Manaugh ( last modified Jan 20, 2013



[Image: An otherwise unrelated image from NASA, an artist's rendition of the heliosphere and magnetic fields].

The Earth is "constantly crashing through huge walls of dark matter," New Scientist explains, "and we already have the tools to detect them."

This dark architecture in space consists of so-called "domain walls" that are like the boundaries between soap bubbles in foam. "The idea is that the hot early universe was full of an exotic force field that varied randomly. As the universe expanded and cooled, the field froze, leaving a patchwork of domains, each with its own distinct value for the field."

The Earth now randomly "crashes" through this "grid of domain walls"—a remnant "patchwork" of frozen, remnant force fields and now something perhaps less like soap bubbles and metaphorically closer to cosmic-scale magnetic ice, a structured frost we move through without seeing—on a scale of once every several years. So, not quite "constantly," as the lead sentence implies, but, given the age of the universe, I suppose that's constant enough.

But how do we find them, this grid of domain walls we apparently live within? We simply need to install dedicated magnetometers at stations around the world, and look for evidence of this colossal architecture wrapped all around us in the dark.




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