Dark matter is still a rather mysterious subject, but a new discovery can lead researchers to learn more about it. Looking at images of galaxy clusters taken as part of the Hubble Frontier Fields project, researchers at the University of New South Wales discovered a new method for tracking the distribution of dark matter. This discovery may well offer new insights into what dark matter is.
Although dark matter is a phrase that you hear quite often when it comes to space spreading, it is something we still haven't observed in our universe right away. Nevertheless, many scholars accept the hypothesis that dark matter not only exists but constitutes the vast majority of matter in the universe, so they are constantly seeking clues that can lead to a breakthrough. One of the clues it turns out comes from the intracluster light that develops around dense packed areas of galaxies.
In a newsletter discussing this discovery, NASA describes intracluster lights as "the diffuse glow between galaxies in a cluster." In research published in Monthly Notices by the Royal Astronomical Society researchers at the University of New South Wales say that intracluster lights track the distribution of dark matter, and it does so with more accuracy than traditional measurement methods.
Study co-author Mireia Montes told NASA that this discovery is exciting in part, as it is also a more effective method of tracking dark matter as well. While scientists tend to use spectroscopy to measure dark matter, this method requires only Hubble and other telescopes' deep formation properties. Therefore, the process of studying intracluster light will be accelerated, and we will probably be able to learn more about dark matter in less time.
From here find the research team responsible for this plan to return to the original six galaxy clusters they studied to see if the accuracy of this method remains within a larger observation radius. They will also look at deep image processing from other space telescopes and see if this method of tracking dark matter can work on a large scale by a single galaxy. The hope is that this discovery will accelerate our learning with regard to dark matter, so stay up to date for more.