The Anapole as Dark Matter and its Impact on Science

Science tells us that matter is anything with mass that occupies space, but a whopping 84.5% of that matter cannot be seen, with or without optical technology. The vast majority of matter is thus categorized as dark. The 15.5% that remains is the matter we can detect, matter that emits and absorbs light’s energy.

Dark matter has the “matter” nomenclature but it does not act like the matter we know. In all ranges of the electromagnetic (EM) spectrum, it is not visible with the naked eye or any adaptive lens. That is to say it does not react with light or any other EM radiation. Thus, it does not have a charge. The lack of a charge means you also cannot feel it. So, how do we know it is there? Scientific observations – primarily seen in the orbiting speed of stars – reveal too much gravity for the amount of matter scientists can actually observe.

There have been a host of theories regarding the source of dark matter as well as attempts to identify it. The one I see as the most feasible is a proposal that dark matter is an anapole particle. One of the more recent proposals is a study by two theoretical physicists at Vanderbilt University. Robert Scherrer and Chiu Man Ho proposed that dark matter is made of particles that possess a doughnut-shaped electromagnetic field called an anapole. Many scientists, including Scherrer, like this theory for its “simplicity, uniqueness and the fact it can be tested.” It does not require a whole new exotic particle. It can explain a proposed cosmic mass of radiating and non-radiating structures of matter, variously energized by stars, living and dead, not to speak of primary orbits around super-massive black holes in the center of most galaxies.

If we combine experiments in quantum physics, nuclear fusion studies, and the analysis of chemical properties, scientists have compiled evidence that helps support this non-radiating particle. Quantum physicists speak of anapoles appearing in nuclear parity violations. Fusion physicists heat plasma to millions of degrees in toroidal structures corralling plasma with powerful magnetic fields, thus confining anapole particles. It is a type of Majorana fermion predicted by the Italian physicist Ettore Majorana in 1937.

Anapole dark matter uses the ordinary electromagnetic force, meaning it is not a separate obscure particle but one generated – perhaps, uncommonly – by electrical perturbations of normal matter. Experiments in nuclear fusion generators such as the Stellarator and the Tokamak designs produce the toroidal electrical current of the anapole field. This same Popular Mechanics article shows the comparison of an anapole field with common electric and magnetic dipoles, the anapole being generated by a circular doughnut-shaped induction.

Parity-violating moments, or anapole moments (meaning without poles in Greek), have been observed in the magnetic structure of the nuclei of the cesium-133 isotope. It is currently being tested for the isotope, ytterbium-174 by Berkeley physicist, Dmitry Budker. The weak force violates parity by only acting on left-handed particles. Thus the Budker team is setting “handedness” with electromagnetic jolts and exciting the atoms’ electrons to an excited “triplet-D” state with laser pulses. Budker hopes to reveal “anapole moments” with the ytterbium atom, as was done by another scientist with the ceesium atom. The weak force being the only fundamental interaction that breaks parity-symmetry and charge-symmetry, perhaps explains how the anapole comes to combine particle and antiparticle.

Ali Yazdani, a professor of physics at Princeton University, aided by his colleagues, used a giant, two-story microscope to focus on a superconductor state. A tiny iron wire was placed on a chunk of lead and cooled to -272 degrees Celsius (1.15 K, slowing atoms to inactivity).  The conditions produced Majorana fermions (anapoles) hovering at the end of the wire. Most recently, neutron investigations seek to reveal anapoles through high-temperature (somewhere around 30 Kelvin) superconductivity studies, using copper oxides. They are planned this year by several sources, including The French National Research Agency (ANR).

According to Vanderbilt theoretical physicists, normal matter, that is particles with the familiar electrical and magnetic dipoles, interact with EM fields, even when they are stationary. Majorana fermions, as anapole fields are called, don’t interact unless they are moving. The faster they move, the stronger they react. They also suggested that anapoles annihilated in the early universe, but now carry their own anti-particle and move more slowly. For this reason, they are hard to detect, they say.

In lab conditions, scientists are proving the existence of the Majorana fermion. Applied to vast sums of known matter in the universe, its power and energy could be enormous. The universe contains some 10 trillion galaxies, with clusters, and super clusters, contains perhaps 10 octillion stars. Given reactions in the lab, we might have good reason to believe that anapoles can be byproducts of star and planet formation and that the fusion process in stars is somehow involved in the formation of Majorana fermions, which is now hidden dark matter.

We have given examples of laboratory models of this cosmic theater, experiments that have created Majorana fermions (anapoles) in fusion generators, in heavy atoms, and through superconductors. The weak force has featured prominently in at least two of these experiments while perhaps the vacuum of space is, in effect, the galaxy’s superconductor of electromagnetic energy.

It so happens that the weak force is responsible for the radioactive decay of subatomic particles, which is essential for nuclear fusion in the core of all stars. Scientists agree that dark matter only interacts with the weak force.  Some 100 billion stars orbiting the Milky Way’s galactic core depend on that weak force. A vast network of magnetic fields surrounds the galactic core, magnetism more intense near the center.  Each star utilizes the weak force for fusion energy.  Without fusion energy light would vacate the entire universe.

Beyond fusion and the weak force, there is a vast, dynamic network of matter in our universe, countless atoms magnetically bound in molecules, compounds, and mixtures, and bundled into billions of light-years of galaxies and super galaxies. All generate electromagnetic forces, from the tiny electron spins paired with two opposing states and their tiny magnetic fields, with spin-orbit coupling and the nuclear spin – all interact with external magnetic fields. Trillions upon trillions of bonds hold this titanic mass together with massive orbital motions generating swirling magnetic fields.

It is a colossal toroidal motion revolving around galactic cores, which in turn plays orbital tag with neighboring galaxies. Out of this flux, it is easy to imagine Majorana fermions forming, augmenting the matter we can see.

It would seem that further research could not only prove anapole’s dark matter connection but also open up a whole new scientific understanding of the fundamental forces of nature, changing all disciplines of science and their applications.

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