Scientists fasten seat-belts to discover Fifth Force of nature in the Universe

dark matter
Composite image of the Perseus galaxy cluster using data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory, ESA’s XMM-Newton and Hitomi, a Japanese-led X-ray telescope. X-ray: NASA/CXO/Fabian

A group of scientists has now started their most ambitious hunt to discover a dark force often known as the 'fifth force of nature' which they believe the universe is made up of. If these scientists succeed in discovering this mysterious force, then it could reshape the entire understanding of the cosmos.

It should be noted that all the stars, planets and galaxies that can be seen today just make up 4 percent of our universe. The remaining 96 percent is a mystery, and through this research, scientists hope to unveil the dark secrets of the universe.

"At the moment, we don't know what more than 90% of the universe is made of. If we find this force it will completely change the paradigm we have now. It would open up a new world and help us to understand the particles and forces that compose the dark sector," said Mauro Raggi, a researcher at the Sapienza University of Rome, who takes part in this study, reports.

Scientists who are taking part in this new study are planning to turn on an advanced instrument at the National Institute of Nuclear Physics near Rome. This instrument will search for mysterious substances that make up space.

The instrument named Positron Annihilation into Dark Matter Experiment (PADME) will record and analyze the results when a diamond which is just a tenth of a millimeter thick is blasted with antimatter particles called positrons.

When the positrons hit the diamond, they emerge with electrons, and from the energy of the electrons is released, it will release two photons. If there is the presence of dark matter, then only one photon will be released.

Even though the chances to find the dark matter are very narrow, scientists believe that a small finding or clue about the dark matter during this experiment will turn out to be a milestone discovery in the world of physics.

This article was first published on September 4, 2018