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Dark matter accounts for approximately 85 percent of all the mass density in the known Universe. The elusive substance is “dark”, meaning scientists cannot detect or interact with it in any meaningful way. Now an experiment conducted at the European Organisation for Nuclear Research (CERN), demonstrates a landmark new technique for capturing and measuring the extremely rare decay of a sub-atomic particle. And their results, presented at a CERN Seminar today, indicate how precise measurements of this process could hint at new physics, beyond the Standard Model developed in the 1970s.

The Standard Model is still used to describe the fundamental forces and building blocks of the Universe.

It is a highly successful theory, but there remain mysteries of the Universe the Standard Model cannot explain, such as the nature of dark matter and the origins of the matter-antimatter imbalance.

Scientists have searched for extensions to the Standard Model able to predict new particles or interactions that explains these phenomena.

The new measurement was made at the CERN particle physics laboratory by a team led by the University of Birmingham.

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Category: Science