Ellen Sirks (U. Sydney)

3:30pm Wednesday May 3, 2023
Geoff Opat Seminar Room

Galaxy clusters: giant dark matter particle colliders

Galaxy clusters are the largest gravitationally bound structures in the Universe. Because of their high density and high local velocity dispersion, they are ideal environments for probing the nature of dark matter. The specific properties of dark matter can have great effects on both clusters as a whole as well as on the galaxies residing in them. For example, if the self-interaction cross-section is non-zero, such effects include (but are not limited to) offsets in merging clusters, rounder cluster haloes, modified gravitational lensing, subhalo evaporation, and the flattening of density profiles. In this talk I will present my work studying some of the effects of self-interacting dark matter on simulated galaxy clusters. In addition, I will make forecasts for future surveys and in particular the SuperBIT telescope, which was launched on the 15th of April 2023.