Indirect Dark Matter Searches
One of the fundamental puzzles in cosmology is the nature of Dark Matter (DM) that presently constitutes one quarter of the energy density of the Universe.
Candidate particles for this form of matter include weakly interacting massive particles (WIMPs) that could have been thermally produced in the early Universe. IceCube can probe the existence of these particles by the observation of a flux of neutrinos produced in the annihilation or decay of WIMPs while they cluster in nearby galaxies, the DM halo of the Milky Way, the Sun, or the Earth. In the case of compact objects, like Sun and Earth, neutrinos are the only SM particles that can escape the dense environments and probe the existence of WIMPs.
A search was carried out looking for an excess of neutrinos from the direction of the center of the our Galaxy, in three years of IceCube data collected from 2012-2014. Since no statistically significant excess was observed, constraints can be derived on the thermally averaged annihilation cross section <σ_A v> as a function of the mass of the WIMP particle. Below ~100 GeV, these are the most stringent constraints from a neutrino detector.
The DeepCore array inside IceCube has a low-energy threshold that allows us to study neutrino oscillation properties.
This area of research includes searches for neutrino sources, and progenitors of ultra-high-energy cosmic rays (UHECR).
Dark Matter (DM) Searches
Many theories describing DM candidates predict that they can annihilate into detectable neutrinos.
The IceCube Upgrade
Work is underway to develop the software and analysis tools needed for a new extension of IceCube, to be deployed in 2022/2023.
Discover The Detector
Learn more about how neutrinos are detected in IceCube.