Event Details

If you believe the world’s leading physicists, the vast majority of matter in the universe is hiding in plain sight. For nearly a century, evidence has mounted that the gravitational pull necessary to keep clusters of galaxies intact, as well as stars within galaxies from flying apart, requires far more matter than we can see—matter, according to the experts, that has eluded our telescopes, because it does not give off light. Problem is, such “dark matter” has also eluded one specially designed detector after another that researchers have deployed to catch it. Which raises the big question: What if we have failed to find dark matter because it isn’t there? Join leading physicists on a scientific treasure hunt that has proved more challenging than anyone expected, and may ultimately require rethinking some of our most fundamental ideas about the universe.

This program is part of the BIG IDEAS SERIES, made possible with support from the JOHN TEMPLETON FOUNDATION.

PARTICIPANTS: Mariangela Lisanti, Joseph Silk, Erik Verlinde, and Risa Wechsler
MODERATOR: Brian Greene

Learn more at worldsciencefestival.com



0:03 – Introduction to dark matter
10:55 – Panelist introductions
12:28 – How do we explain motion in the universe?
16:35 – Is the “dark stuff” ordinary matter?
22:43 – Supersymmetric particles
30:06 – Weakly Interacting Massive Particles
33:14 – Searchng for gamma ray signatures of WIMP dark matter
37:25 – What is the role of dark matter in the structure of the universe?
43:23 – Cold vs warm dark matter
46:54 – The “dark sector” possibility
52:56 – Expanding our understanding of gravity and thermodynamics
1:01:34 – Is there a connection between dark energy and dark matter?
1:07:36 – Why do galaxies rotate?
1:14:25 – Future predictions for the discovery of dark matter

– Produced by Laura Dattaro
– Associate Produced by Peter Goldberg
– Music provided by APM
– Additional images and footage provided by: The Dark Energy Survey, SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory
– Recorded at the Gerald W. Lynch Theatre at John Jay College