Dark Matter

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Recently, Astronomers have made the most detailed map ever of mysterious dark matter using the universe’s very first light

Why in News?

  • Researchers from U.S. National Science Foundation's (NSF) used the Atacama Cosmology Telescope to create this new map of the dark matter.
  • The new image, made using 14 billion-year-old light from the turbulent aftermath of the Big Bang, shows the enormous matter tendrils that formed not long after the universe exploded into being.
  • It turns out the shapes of these tendrils are remarkably similar to those predicted using Einstein's theory of general relativity. 
  • The new result contradicts previous dark matter maps that suggested the cosmic web is less clumpy than Einstein's theory predicted.

What is dark matter?

  • Dark matter is the mysterious stuff that fills the universe but no one has ever seen. 
  • Over 80% of all matter in the universe is made up of dark matter.
  • It emits no light or energy and thus cannot be detected by conventional sensors and detectors.

The Atacama Cosmology Telescope

  • The telescope was commissioned at its site in late 2007.
  • It is a six-meter diameter telescope on Cerro Toco in the Atacama Desert of northern Chile.
  • Its goal is to study how the universe began, what it is made of, and how it evolved to its current state.


Q1) What is Dark Energy?

Dark energy is a hypothetical form of energy that is proposed by physicists to explain why the universe is not just expanding but is doing so at an accelerating rate.

Source: Einstein was right about invisible dark matter, massive new map of the universe suggests