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

Title: GeV-scale thermal WIMPs: Not even slightly ruled out

Abstract

Weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPs) have long reigned as one of the leading classes of dark matter candidates. The observed dark matter abundance can be naturally obtained by freezeout of weak-scale dark matter annihilations in the early Universe. This “thermal WIMP” scenario makes direct predictions for the total annihilation cross section that can be tested in present-day experiments. While the dark matter mass constraint can be as high as mχ ≳ 100 GeV for particular annihilation channels, the constraint on the total cross section has not been determined. We construct the first model-independent limit on the WIMP total annihilation cross section, showing that allowed combinations of the annihilation-channel branching ratios considerably weaken the sensitivity. For thermal WIMPs with s-wave 2 → 2 annihilation to visible final states, we find the dark matter mass is only known to be mχ ≳ 20 GeV . This is the strongest largely model-independent lower limit on the mass of thermal-relic WIMPs; together with the upper limit on the mass from the unitarity bound (m χ ≲ 100 TeV), it defines what we call the “WIMP window.” To probe the remaining mass range, we outline ways forward.

Authors:
 [1];  [1];  [2];  [3]
  1. Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
  2. The Ohio State Univ., Columbus, OH (United States)
  3. Weizmann Inst. of Science, Rehovot (Israel)
Publication Date:
Research Org.:
Massachusetts Inst. of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, MA (United States)
Sponsoring Org.:
USDOE Office of Science (SC)
OSTI Identifier:
1460755
Alternate Identifier(s):
OSTI ID: 1501531
Grant/Contract Number:  
SC0013999; SC00012567
Resource Type:
Published Article
Journal Name:
Physical Review D
Additional Journal Information:
Journal Volume: 98; Journal Issue: 2; Journal ID: ISSN 2470-0010
Publisher:
American Physical Society (APS)
Country of Publication:
United States
Language:
English
Subject:
72 PHYSICS OF ELEMENTARY PARTICLES AND FIELDS

Citation Formats

Leane, Rebecca K., Slatyer, Tracy R., Beacom, John F., and Ng, Kenny C. Y. GeV-scale thermal WIMPs: Not even slightly ruled out. United States: N. p., 2018. Web. doi:10.1103/physrevd.98.023016.
Leane, Rebecca K., Slatyer, Tracy R., Beacom, John F., & Ng, Kenny C. Y. GeV-scale thermal WIMPs: Not even slightly ruled out. United States. doi:10.1103/physrevd.98.023016.
Leane, Rebecca K., Slatyer, Tracy R., Beacom, John F., and Ng, Kenny C. Y. Wed . "GeV-scale thermal WIMPs: Not even slightly ruled out". United States. doi:10.1103/physrevd.98.023016.
@article{osti_1460755,
title = {GeV-scale thermal WIMPs: Not even slightly ruled out},
author = {Leane, Rebecca K. and Slatyer, Tracy R. and Beacom, John F. and Ng, Kenny C. Y.},
abstractNote = {Weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPs) have long reigned as one of the leading classes of dark matter candidates. The observed dark matter abundance can be naturally obtained by freezeout of weak-scale dark matter annihilations in the early Universe. This “thermal WIMP” scenario makes direct predictions for the total annihilation cross section that can be tested in present-day experiments. While the dark matter mass constraint can be as high as mχ ≳ 100 GeV for particular annihilation channels, the constraint on the total cross section has not been determined. We construct the first model-independent limit on the WIMP total annihilation cross section, showing that allowed combinations of the annihilation-channel branching ratios considerably weaken the sensitivity. For thermal WIMPs with s-wave 2 → 2 annihilation to visible final states, we find the dark matter mass is only known to be mχ ≳ 20 GeV . This is the strongest largely model-independent lower limit on the mass of thermal-relic WIMPs; together with the upper limit on the mass from the unitarity bound (m χ ≲ 100 TeV), it defines what we call the “WIMP window.” To probe the remaining mass range, we outline ways forward.},
doi = {10.1103/physrevd.98.023016},
journal = {Physical Review D},
number = 2,
volume = 98,
place = {United States},
year = {2018},
month = {7}
}

Journal Article:
Free Publicly Available Full Text
Publisher's Version of Record
DOI: 10.1103/physrevd.98.023016

Citation Metrics:
Cited by: 16 works
Citation information provided by
Web of Science

Save / Share: