Behind the Scenes of the Universe: From the Higgs to Dark Matter

ISBN : 9780199683086

Gianfranco Bertone
192 Pages
148 x 221 mm
Pub date
Oct 2013
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An extraordinary discovery has recently shaken the foundations of Cosmology and Particle Physics, sparking a scientific revolution that has profoundly modified our understanding of our Universe and that is still far from over. Pioneering astronomers in the 1920s and 1930s had already noticed suspicious anomalies in the motion of celestial bodies in distant galaxies and clusters of galaxies, but it wasn't until the late 20th century that the scientific community was confronted with an astonishing conclusion: the Universe is filled with an unknown, elusive substance that is fundamentally different from anything we have ever seen with our telescopes or measured in our laboratories. It is called dark matter, and it constitutes one of the most pressing challenges of modern science. In this book, aimed at the general reader with an interest in science, the author illustrates in non-technical terms, borrowing concepts and ideas from other branches of art and literature, the far-reaching implications of this discovery. It has led to a worldwide race to identify the nature of this mysterious form of matter. We may be about to witness a pivotal paradigm shift in Physics, as we set out to test the existence of dark matter particles with a wide array of experiments, including the Large Hadron Collider at CERN, as well as with a new generation of Astroparticle experiments underground and in space.


1. A Dark Mystery
2. Lurking in the Dark
3. Monsters
4. The Cosmic Show
5. Swiss Dark Matter Factory
6. Underground Mines, with a View
7. Signals from the Sky
8. The Road Ahead

About the author: 

Gianfranco Bertone is an Associate Professor at the University of Amsterdam, where he investigates topics at the interface between Particle Physics and Cosmology. After a PhD at the University of Oxford and the Institute of Astrophysics in Paris, he has held teaching and research positions at the Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory, the University of Padova and the University of Zurich, before going back to Paris as a permanent CNRS researcher. He joined in 2011 the new center of excellence in Gravitation and Astroparticle Physics of the University of Amsterdam. He is the editor of the book Particle Dark Matter: Observations, Models and Searches and the editor-in-chief of the journal Physics of the Dark Universe.

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