New clues suggest we may have our own belt of dark matter. Image Credit: CC BY-SA 2.0 Open Space Project
New research suggests that the Earth may be heavier than believed due to the presence of dark matter.
Dark matter is a theoretical type of matter that is believed to make up a large percentage of the mass of the universe. It can't be observed directly and there is no guarantee that it actually exists at all, but nonetheless this enigmatic material has been a staple of cosmological science for years.
Recent research has suggested that dark matter might not only exist out in space but may actually be present around our own planet as well. In 2009, scientists at Princeton's Institute of Advanced Studies were investigating anomalous changes in the speeds of space probes in orbit around the Earth and theorized that this could be down to the presence of dark matter.
More recently, Ben Harris of the University of Texas conducted similar research to discover anomalies in the Earth's mass. His findings indicated that there could be a band of dark matter around the Earth's equator measuring 45,000 miles wide and 120 miles thick.
Source: UPI | Comments (61)
Dark Matter, Earth