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A Super-Sensitive Dark Matter Detector Just Booted Up

The LUX-ZEPLIN (LZ) experiment team released the findings from its first scientific run today; the experiment is the most sensitive Dark Matter detector in the world, and although though it did not discover any in its initial run, the researchers said the experiment is functioning as predicted.

The 1.5 m tall and 1.5 m wide liquid xenon tanks that make up the LZ experiment detector are buried under South Dakota. A Dark Matter particle speeding across space is supposed to finally collide with a xenon atom and bounce off it, releasing electrons in a flash that is captured by the experiment. To reduce the quantity of ambient noise, the tank is sunk roughly a mile below the surface of the planet.

The announcement made today follows 60 live data gathering days from December 25 to May 12. By particle physics standards, we’re seeking for recoils with extremely low energies. Hugh Lippincott, a physicist at UC Santa Barbara and a part of the LZ team, said in a news conference today that the process is extremely unusual, if it is even detectable.

At the end of a light-year, a Dark Matter particle can travel through 10 million light-years of lead and anticipate only one interaction.The general term for the unidentified substance that appears to make up around 27% of the cosmos is “Dark Matter.” It seldom interacts with everyday stuff, which is why it appears to us to be “black.”

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