Chinese sat detects mysterious signals

Source:Xinhua Published: 2017/11/30 23:18:40

China's Dark Matter Particle Explorer (DAMPE) has detected unexpected and mysterious signals in its measurement of high-energy cosmic rays.  

The satellite, Wukong or Monkey King, has measured more than 3.5 billion cosmic ray particles with the highest energy up to 100 tera-electron-volts (TeV for short, corresponding to 1 trillion times the energy of visible light), including 20 million electrons and positrons, with unprecedented high energy resolution, which could bring scientists a step closer to shedding light on invisible dark matter.

"DAMPE has opened a new window for observing the high-energy universe, unveiling new physical phenomena beyond our current understanding," said Chang Jin, chief scientist of DAMPE and vice director of the Chinese Academy of Sciences' (CAS) Purple Mountain Observatory.

The initial results on the precise measurement of the electron and positron spectrum in an energy range between 25 giga-electron-volts (GeV) and 4.6 TeV were published in the latest issue of the academic journal, Nature.

"This is the first time a space experiment has reported the detailed and precise electron and positron spectrum up to about 5 TeV. In this energy range, we found some unexpected and interesting features. We have detected a spectral break at 0.9 TeV and a possible spike at 1.4 TeV," Chang said.



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