Probing the dark matter properties using red giant stars


  • Call:

    IDPASC Portugal - PHD Programme 2016

  • Academic Year:

    2016 / 2017

  • Domains:

    Cosmology | Astrophysics

  • Supervisor:

    Ilidio Lopes

  • Co-Supervisor:

  • Institution:

    Instituto Superior Técnico

  • Host Institution:

    Instituto Superior Técnico

  • Abstract:

    Goal: Study the properties of dark matter using the current asteroseismology data from red giant stars. Expected result: Compute the impact of dark matter in the evolution of red giant stars, make predictions and put constraints in the properties of dark matter particles by analyzing their effect on the evolution of these stars. Description: Twelve thousand red giant stars were discovered by the COROT and Kepler satellite missions [1,2] to have stellar oscillations somehow identical to the ones found in the Sun. The Kepler satellite alone has obtained data up to a distance of 15 Kpc, observing stars uninterruptedly throughout the first 3.5 years of the mission. This large amount of data [3] has the potential of revolutionizing our understanding of the internal physics of stars in the post-main sequence – the sub-giant and red giant phases. As these red giant stars are distributed in many locations of our galaxy with different dark matter contents, like the galactic disk and bulge, including stellar clusters and the core of the Milky Way, they are a very interesting tool to probe the nature of dark matter in our galaxy. The candidate will use our high precision stellar dark matter code to compute the impact of dark matter particles on red giant stars [4]. In particular, the candidate will compute spectra of oscillations for several red giant stars evolving in different dark matter halos. Moreover, the candidate will interpret, analyze and compare these theoretical results with the astereoseismic data of these stars. References: [1] Chaplin et al. 2011, "Ensemble Asteroseismology of Solar-Type Stars with the NASA Kepler Mission" Science, 332, 213 [2] B. Mosser et al. 2010, "Red-giant seismic properties analyzed with CoRoT", Astronomy & Astrophyiscs, Vol. 512 , A22 [3] Chaplin, W.~J., & Miglio, A. 2013, "Asteroseismology of Solar-Type and Red-Giant Stars", Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics, 51, 353 [4] Sylvaine Turck-Chieze et Ilidio Lopes 2012, " Solar-stellar astrophysics and dark matter", Vol 12 (8), 1107 - 1138.