Sneaky Neutrinos and Their Role in Dark Matter
Walter Tangarife and his collaborators published new findings in a paper titled "Dodelson-Widrow Mechanism in the Presence of Self-Interacting Neutrinos" in Physical Review Letters in February 2020. Their paper advances the hypothesis that neutrinos comprise dark matter. In particular, the authors posit that a new interaction among neutrinos drives their formation into dark matter. "If neutrinos can ‘talk’ to one another significantly more strongly than what is predicted by the Standard Model of Particle Physics, a simple, experimentally testable solution to the dark matter puzzle becomes available. Dark matter that mixes a tiny bit with the neutrinos (often referred to as ‘sterile neutrino dark matter’) can easily be produced via neutrino oscillations in the early Universe and can be detected as they decay very slowly, emitting X-rays. In the absence of new physics, this hypothesis is virtually ruled out by astrophysical observations. Here, we show that new interactions among the active neutrinos allow these sterile neutrinos to make up all the DM while safely evading all current experimental bounds." This interaction may be observable in the upcoming Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE), which will be conducted at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory in Batavia, Illinois and at the Sanford Underground Research Laboratory in Lead, South Dakota as a 1300-km experiment.