News & Events

Dark Black Holes – Sarah Shandera (Penn State)

Event Details

McDonald Institute Seminar Series

Location: STI 501

Date: March 2, 2023

Time: 2:30pm - 3:30pm

Title: Dark Black Holes

Abstract: Gravitational wave detections of merging ultracompact objects provide a completely new way to constrain non-minimal dark matter models. If the dark matter consists of a rich spectrum of particles, it will generically contain channels for dissipative energy loss that can lead to the formation of compact objects. We have recently calculated a crucial set of processes for “atomic dark matter” that enable accurate calculations of the spectrum of black holes produced in this scenario. I will show how these results inform gravitational wave searches, as well as the first generation of accurate simulations of structure formation with dissipative dark matter. Current data, especially from searches for sub-solar mass objects, already provide new constraints on the particle physics properties of dark matter. A detection of a dark matter black hole in an upcoming search would be revolutionary, directly bounding the mass of the heaviest fermion in the atomic dark matter scenario and constraining the size of the dark molecular energy gap.

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