A Quark Matter Contribution to the Cosmic Ray Spectrum
Department of Physics and Astronomy, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, V6T 1Z1, Canada
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I will describe a possible dark matter model in which the dark matter is composed of heavy “nuggets” of standard model quarks and antiquarks bound in a high density phase of QCD. If objects of this type are formed early in the universe's history they may provide the observed dark matter content. In this scenario the nuggets are dark not because of their fundamentally weak interactions but because of the incredibly small number density required to explain the observed mass density of the dark matter. The correspondingly small flux of these objects through the earth renders them invisible to conventional high sensitivity dark matter searches intended to detect weakly interacting particles with a flux many orders of magnitude larger. Instead the greatest search potential for dark matter models of this form may come from the largest scale cosmic ray detectors. I will briefly describe the properties of quark nugget dark matter and then use these properties in order to predict the signal they would produce in a variety of cosmic ray detectors.
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