Classical and Quantum Gravity Seminar: Radiating Macroscopic Dark Matter
Dark matter is believed to constitute about 5/6th of the matter in the universe, but its nature and interactions remain one of the great puzzles of fundamental physics. Despite extensive experimental efforts, there have been no widely believed detections of WIMPS, axions or any other physics Beyond the Standard Model (BSM) (except for neutrino oscillations which are BSM principally by historical accident). The question then arises: could the Standard Model, the most accurate and extremely well-tested theory of all observed particles in nature, explain dark matter as well? Many models of exotic quark matter have been proposed, each sharing the property that they are of approximately nuclear density and macroscopic size, resulting in the term macroscopic dark matter or "macros." Since neutron stars are known to have similar properties, using them as a toy model, we study the effects macros might have on the CMB blackbody distribution and on the recombination history of the universe.