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Title: Directional resolution of dish antenna experiments to search for WISPy dark matter

Abstract

Dark matter consisting of very light and very weakly interacting particles such as axions, axion-like particles and hidden photons could be detected using reflective surfaces. On such reflectors some of the dark matter particles are converted into photons and, given a suitable geometry, concentrated on the detector. This technique offers sensitivity to the direction of the velocity of the dark matter particles. In this note we investigate how far spherical mirrors can concentrate the generated photons and what this implies for the resolution in directional detection as well as the sensitivity of discovery experiments not aiming for directional resolution. Finally we discuss an improved setup using a combination of a reflecting plane with focussing optics.

Authors:
;  [1]
  1. Institut für theoretische Physik, Universität Heidelberg,Philosophenweg 16, 69120 Heidelberg (Germany)
Publication Date:
Sponsoring Org.:
SCOAP3, CERN, Geneva (Switzerland)
OSTI Identifier:
22458421
Resource Type:
Journal Article
Resource Relation:
Journal Name: Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics; Journal Volume: 2016; Journal Issue: 01; Other Information: PUBLISHER-ID: JCAP01(2016)005; OAI: oai:repo.scoap3.org:13308; 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; ANTENNAS; AXIONS; DETECTION; MIRRORS; NONLUMINOUS MATTER; OPTICS; PHOTONS; RESOLUTION; SPHERICAL CONFIGURATION

Citation Formats

Jaeckel, Joerg, and Knirck, Stefan. Directional resolution of dish antenna experiments to search for WISPy dark matter. United States: N. p., 2016. Web. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2016/01/005.
Jaeckel, Joerg, & Knirck, Stefan. Directional resolution of dish antenna experiments to search for WISPy dark matter. United States. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2016/01/005.
Jaeckel, Joerg, and Knirck, Stefan. 2016. "Directional resolution of dish antenna experiments to search for WISPy dark matter". United States. doi:10.1088/1475-7516/2016/01/005.
@article{osti_22458421,
title = {Directional resolution of dish antenna experiments to search for WISPy dark matter},
author = {Jaeckel, Joerg and Knirck, Stefan},
abstractNote = {Dark matter consisting of very light and very weakly interacting particles such as axions, axion-like particles and hidden photons could be detected using reflective surfaces. On such reflectors some of the dark matter particles are converted into photons and, given a suitable geometry, concentrated on the detector. This technique offers sensitivity to the direction of the velocity of the dark matter particles. In this note we investigate how far spherical mirrors can concentrate the generated photons and what this implies for the resolution in directional detection as well as the sensitivity of discovery experiments not aiming for directional resolution. Finally we discuss an improved setup using a combination of a reflecting plane with focussing optics.},
doi = {10.1088/1475-7516/2016/01/005},
journal = {Journal of Cosmology and Astroparticle Physics},
number = 01,
volume = 2016,
place = {United States},
year = 2016,
month = 1
}
  • Dark matter consisting of very light and very weakly interacting particles such as axions, axion-like particles and hidden photons could be detected using reflective surfaces. On such reflectors some of the dark matter particles are converted into photons and, given a suitable geometry, concentrated on the detector. This technique offers sensitivity to the direction of the velocity of the dark matter particles. In this note we investigate how far spherical mirrors can concentrate the generated photons and what this implies for the resolution in directional detection as well as the sensitivity of discovery experiments not aiming for directional resolution. Finallymore » we discuss an improved setup using a combination of a reflecting plane with focussing optics.« less
  • The cold dark matter of the Universe may be comprised of very light and very weakly interacting particles, so-called WISPs. Two prominent examples are hidden photons and axion-like particles. In this note we propose a new technique to sensitively search for this type of dark matter with dish antennas. The technique is broadband and allows to explore a whole range of masses in a single measurement.
  • It is an intriguing possibility that the cold dark matter of the Universe may consist of very light and very weakly interacting particles such as axion(-like particles) and hidden photons. This opens up (but also requires) new techniques for direct detection. One possibility is to use reflecting surfaces to facilitate the conversion of dark matter into photons, which can be concentrated in a detector with a suitable geometry. In this note we show that this technique also allows for directional detection and inference of the full vectorial velocity spectrum of the dark matter particles. We also note that the non-vanishingmore » velocity of dark matter particles is relevant for the conception of (non-directional) discovery experiments and outline relevant features.« less
  • Very weakly interacting slim particles (WISPs), such as axion-like particles (ALPs) or hidden photons (HPs), may be non-thermally produced via the misalignment mechanism in the early universe and survive as a cold dark matter population until today. We find that, both for ALPs and HPs whose dominant interactions with the standard model arise from couplings to photons, a huge region in the parameter spaces spanned by photon coupling and ALP or HP mass can give rise to the observed cold dark matter. Remarkably, a large region of this parameter space coincides with that predicted in well motivated models of fundamentalmore » physics. A wide range of experimental searches — exploiting haloscopes (direct dark matter searches exploiting microwave cavities), helioscopes (searches for solar ALPs or HPs), or light-shining-through-a-wall techniques — can probe large parts of this parameter space in the foreseeable future.« less
  • Dark matter (DM) direct detection experiments which are directionally-sensitive may be the only method of probing the full velocity distribution function (VDF) of the Galactic DM halo. We present an angular basis for the DM VDF which can be used to parametrise the distribution in order to mitigate astrophysical uncertainties in future directional experiments and extract information about the DM halo. This basis consists of discretising the VDF in a series of angular bins, with the VDF being only a function of the DM speed v within each bin. In contrast to other methods, such as spherical harmonic expansions, themore » use of this basis allows us to guarantee that the resulting VDF is everywhere positive and therefore physical. We present a recipe for calculating the event rates corresponding to the discrete VDF for an arbitrary number of angular bins N and investigate the discretisation error which is introduced in this way. For smooth, Standard Halo Model-like distribution functions, only N=3 angular bins are required to achieve an accuracy of around 10–30% in the number of events in each bin. Shortly after confirmation of the DM origin of the signal with around 50 events, this accuracy should be sufficient to allow the discretised velocity distribution to be employed reliably. For more extreme VDFs (such as streams), the discretisation error is typically much larger, but can be improved with increasing N. This method paves the way towards an astrophysics-independent analysis framework for the directional detection of dark matter.« less