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The coming decade will be the decade of dark matter, some scientists say, as efforts to detect the mysterious stuff will either pay off or rule out the most promising hypothesis about what it is. But astronomers may have already detected signs of dark matter in the heart of our own Milky Way galaxy, a pair of astrophysicists now says.

Data from NASA's space-borne Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope reveal an excess of gamma-rays coming from the galactic center that could be produced as particles of dark matter annihilate one another, Kevork Abazajian and Manoj Kaplinghat of the University of California, Irvine, report in a paper posted to the arXiv preprint server. "There's definitely some source there, and it fits with the dark matter interpretation," Abazajian says. But other researchers say the excess could be an artifact of the way Abazajian and Kaplinghat model the gamma-ray flux, or it could originate from more-mundane sources.

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