Ask Ethan #66: Did we just find dark matter? (Synopsis)

“Time takes it all whether you want it to or not, time takes it all. Time bares it away, and in the end there is only darkness.” –Stephen King

This story seems to come up every few months. Someone detects a possibly unexpected signal somewhere in the sky — normally correlated to the centers of galaxies or galaxy clusters — and says: that’s it, I found dark matter!

Image credit: European Space Agency, NASA and Jean-Paul Kneib (Observatoire Midi-Pyrénées, France/Caltech, USA), via http://www.spacetelescope.org/images/heic0309a/.
Image credit: European Space Agency, NASA and Jean-Paul Kneib (Observatoire Midi-Pyrénées, France/Caltech, USA), via http://www.spacetelescope.org/images/heic0309a/.

Did you, though? The evidence has panned out to be a resounding no every single time upon closer examination. So what about these latest claims, are they going to be any different.

Image credit: Alexey Boyarsky, Oleg Ruchayskiy, Dmytro Iakubovskyi, Jeroen Franse, screenshot via the full paper available at http://arxiv.org/abs/1402.4119.
Image credit: Alexey Boyarsky, Oleg Ruchayskiy, Dmytro Iakubovskyi, Jeroen Franse, screenshot via the full paper available at http://arxiv.org/abs/1402.4119.

In fact, we already know this current claim can’t be responsible for the dark matter. Come find out why!