skip to main content
OSTI.GOV title logo U.S. Department of Energy
Office of Scientific and Technical Information

Title: Identifying the theory of dark matter with direct detection

Abstract

Identifying the true theory of dark matter depends crucially on accurately characterizing interactions of dark matter (DM) with other species. In the context of DM direct detection, we present a study of the prospects for correctly identifying the low-energy effective DM-nucleus scattering operators connected to UV-complete models of DM-quark interactions. We take a census of plausible UV-complete interaction models with different low-energy leading-order DM-nuclear responses. For each model (corresponding to different spin–, momentum–, and velocity-dependent responses), we create a large number of realizations of recoil-energy spectra, and use Bayesian methods to investigate the probability that experiments will be able to select the correct scattering model within a broad set of competing scattering hypotheses. We conclude that agnostic analysis of a strong signal (such as Generation-2 would see if cross sections are just below the current limits) seen on xenon and germanium experiments is likely to correctly identify momentum dependence of the dominant response, ruling out models with either “heavy” or “light” mediators, and enabling downselection of allowed models. However, a unique determination of the correct UV completion will critically depend on the availability of measurements from a wider variety of nuclear targets, including iodine or fluorine. We investigate how model-selectionmore » prospects depend on the energy window available for the analysis. In addition, we discuss accuracy of the DM particle mass determination under a wide variety of scattering models, and investigate impact of the specific types of particle-physics uncertainties on prospects for model selection.« less

Authors:
 [1];  [2];  [3];  [4];  [5];  [6];  [5]
  1. School of Natural Sciences, Institute for Advanced Study,Einstein Drive, Princeton NJ 08540 (United States)
  2. Whitman College,Walla Walla, WA 99362 (United States)
  3. C.N. Yang Institute for Theoretical Physics,Stony Brook, NY 11794 (United States)
  4. CCAPP and Department of Physics, The Ohio State University,191 W. Woodruff Ave., Columbus, OH 43210 (United States)
  5. (United States)
  6. Theoretical Physics Group, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory,Berkeley, CA 94720 (United States)
Publication Date:
Sponsoring Org.:
SCOAP3, CERN, Geneva (Switzerland)
OSTI Identifier:
22458419
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics; Journal Volume: 2015; Journal Issue: 12; Other Information: PUBLISHER-ID: JCAP12(2015)057; OAI: oai:repo.scoap3.org:13255; Article funded by SCOAP3. Content from this work may be used under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License. Any further distribution of this work must maintain attribution to the author(s) and the title of the work, journal citation and DOI.; Country of input: International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
72 PHYSICS OF ELEMENTARY PARTICLES AND FIELDS; ACCURACY; COSMIC NUCLEI; CROSS SECTIONS; DETECTION; ENERGY SPECTRA; EXPERIMENT PLANNING; FLUORINE; GERMANIUM; HYPOTHESIS; INTERACTIONS; IODINE; NONLUMINOUS MATTER; QUARKS; RECOILS; SCATTERING; XENON

Citation Formats

Gluscevic, Vera, Gresham, Moira I., McDermott, Samuel D., Peter, Annika H.G., Department of Astronomy, The Ohio State University,140 W. 18th Ave., Columbus, OH 43210, Zurek, Kathryn M., and Berkeley Center for Theoretical Physics, University of California,erkeley, CA 94720. Identifying the theory of dark matter with direct detection. United States: N. p., 2015. Web. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2015/12/057.
Gluscevic, Vera, Gresham, Moira I., McDermott, Samuel D., Peter, Annika H.G., Department of Astronomy, The Ohio State University,140 W. 18th Ave., Columbus, OH 43210, Zurek, Kathryn M., & Berkeley Center for Theoretical Physics, University of California,erkeley, CA 94720. Identifying the theory of dark matter with direct detection. United States. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2015/12/057.
Gluscevic, Vera, Gresham, Moira I., McDermott, Samuel D., Peter, Annika H.G., Department of Astronomy, The Ohio State University,140 W. 18th Ave., Columbus, OH 43210, Zurek, Kathryn M., and Berkeley Center for Theoretical Physics, University of California,erkeley, CA 94720. Tue . "Identifying the theory of dark matter with direct detection". United States. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2015/12/057.
@article{osti_22458419,
title = {Identifying the theory of dark matter with direct detection},
author = {Gluscevic, Vera and Gresham, Moira I. and McDermott, Samuel D. and Peter, Annika H.G. and Department of Astronomy, The Ohio State University,140 W. 18th Ave., Columbus, OH 43210 and Zurek, Kathryn M. and Berkeley Center for Theoretical Physics, University of California,erkeley, CA 94720},
abstractNote = {Identifying the true theory of dark matter depends crucially on accurately characterizing interactions of dark matter (DM) with other species. In the context of DM direct detection, we present a study of the prospects for correctly identifying the low-energy effective DM-nucleus scattering operators connected to UV-complete models of DM-quark interactions. We take a census of plausible UV-complete interaction models with different low-energy leading-order DM-nuclear responses. For each model (corresponding to different spin–, momentum–, and velocity-dependent responses), we create a large number of realizations of recoil-energy spectra, and use Bayesian methods to investigate the probability that experiments will be able to select the correct scattering model within a broad set of competing scattering hypotheses. We conclude that agnostic analysis of a strong signal (such as Generation-2 would see if cross sections are just below the current limits) seen on xenon and germanium experiments is likely to correctly identify momentum dependence of the dominant response, ruling out models with either “heavy” or “light” mediators, and enabling downselection of allowed models. However, a unique determination of the correct UV completion will critically depend on the availability of measurements from a wider variety of nuclear targets, including iodine or fluorine. We investigate how model-selection prospects depend on the energy window available for the analysis. In addition, we discuss accuracy of the DM particle mass determination under a wide variety of scattering models, and investigate impact of the specific types of particle-physics uncertainties on prospects for model selection.},
doi = {10.1088/1475-7516/2015/12/057},
journal = {Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics},
number = 12,
volume = 2015,
place = {United States},
year = {Tue Dec 29 00:00:00 EST 2015},
month = {Tue Dec 29 00:00:00 EST 2015}
}
  • Identifying the true theory of dark matter depends crucially on accurately characterizing interactions of dark matter (DM) with other species. In the context of DM direct detection, we present a study of the prospects for correctly identifying the low-energy effective DM-nucleus scattering operators connected to UV-complete models of DM-quark interactions. We take a census of plausible UV-complete interaction models with different low-energy leading-order DM-nuclear responses. For each model (corresponding to different spin–, momentum–, and velocity-dependent responses), we create a large number of realizations of recoil-energy spectra, and use Bayesian methods to investigate the probability that experiments will be able tomore » select the correct scattering model within a broad set of competing scattering hypotheses. We conclude that agnostic analysis of a strong signal (such as Generation-2 would see if cross sections are just below the current limits) seen on xenon and germanium experiments is likely to correctly identify momentum dependence of the dominant response, ruling out models with either 'heavy' or 'light' mediators, and enabling downselection of allowed models. However, a unique determination of the correct UV completion will critically depend on the availability of measurements from a wider variety of nuclear targets, including iodine or fluorine. We investigate how model-selection prospects depend on the energy window available for the analysis. In addition, we discuss accuracy of the DM particle mass determination under a wide variety of scattering models, and investigate impact of the specific types of particle-physics uncertainties on prospects for model selection.« less
  • We extend and explore the general non-relativistic effective theory of dark matter (DM) direct detection. We describe the basic non-relativistic building blocks of operators and discuss their symmetry properties, writing down all Galilean-invariant operators up to quadratic order in momentum transfer arising from exchange of particles of spin 1 or less. Any DM particle theory can be translated into the coefficients of an effective operator and any effective operator can be simply related to most general description of the nuclear response. We find several operators which lead to novel nuclear responses. These responses differ significantly from the standard minimal WIMPmore » cases in their relative coupling strengths to various elements, changing how the results from different experiments should be compared against each other. Response functions are evaluated for common DM targets — F, Na, Ge, I, and Xe — using standard shell model techniques. We point out that each of the nuclear responses is familiar from past studies of semi-leptonic electroweak interactions, and thus potentially testable in weak interaction studies. We provide tables of the full set of required matrix elements at finite momentum transfer for a range of common elements, making a careful and fully model-independent analysis possible. Finally, we discuss embedding non-relativistic effective theory operators into UV models of dark matter.« less
  • We examine the consequences of the effective eld theory (EFT) of dark matter-nucleon scattering or current and proposed direct detection experiments. Exclusion limits on EFT coupling constants computed using the optimum interval method are presented for SuperCDMS Soudan, CDMS II, and LUX, and the necessity of combining results from multiple experiments in order to determine dark matter parameters is discussed. We demonstrate that spectral di*erences between the standard dark matter model and a general EFT interaction can produce a bias when calculating exclusion limits and when developing signal models for likelihood and machine learning techniques. We also discuss the implicationsmore » of the EFT for the next-generation (G2) direct detection experiments and point out regions of complementarity in the EFT parameter space.« less
  • We examine the consequences of the effective field theory (EFT) of dark matter–nucleon scattering for current and proposed direct detection experiments. Exclusion limits on EFT coupling constants computed using the optimum interval method are presented for SuperCDMS Soudan, CDMS II, and LUX, and the necessity of combining results from multiple experiments in order to determine dark matter parameters is discussed. We demonstrate that spectral differences between the standard dark matter model and a general EFT interaction can produce a bias when calculating exclusion limits and when developing signal models for likelihood and machine learning techniques. We also discuss the implicationsmore » of the EFT for the next-generation (G2) direct detection experiments and point out regions of complementarity in the EFT parameter space.« less
  • Dark matter direct detection searches for signals coming from dark matter scattering against nuclei at a very low recoil energy scale ∼ 10 keV. In this paper, a simple non-relativistic effective theory is constructed to describe interactions between dark matter and nuclei without referring to any underlying high energy models. It contains the minimal set of operators that will be tested by direct detection. The effective theory approach highlights the set of distinguishable recoil spectra that could arise from different theoretical models. If dark matter is discovered in the near future in direct detection experiments, a measurement of the shapemore » of the recoil spectrum will provide valuable information on the underlying dynamics. We bound the coefficients of the operators in our non-relativistic effective theory by the null results of current dark matter direct detection experiments. We also discuss the mapping between the non-relativistic effective theory and field theory models or operators, including aspects of the matching of quark and gluon operators to nuclear form factors.« less