“The results are a major leap forward since the presence of a cosmic dark matter web that extends over such large distances has never been observed before,” says Ludovic Van Waerbeke, an assistant professor in the Dept. of Physics and Astronomy.
To glimpse the unseen structures, the team of French and Canadian scientists “X-rayed” the dark matter, an invisible web that makes up more than 80 per cent of the mass of the universe.
The team used a recently developed technique called “weak gravitational lensing,” which is similar to taking an X-ray of the body to reveal the underlying skeleton. The study relied on data gathered from the world’s largest digital camera.
“This new knowledge is crucial for us to understand the history and evolution of the cosmos,” says Van Waerbeke. “Such a tool will also enable us to glimpse a little more of the nature of dark matter.”
The astronomers observed how light from distant galaxies is bent and distorted by webs of dark matter as it travels toward Earth. They then mapped dark matter structures by measuring the distortions seen in these galaxy light patterns.
Lorraine Chan | EurekAlert!
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Among the general public, solar thermal energy is currently associated with dark blue, rectangular collectors on building roofs. Technologies are needed for aesthetically high quality architecture which offer the architect more room for manoeuvre when it comes to low- and plus-energy buildings. With the “ArKol” project, researchers at Fraunhofer ISE together with partners are currently developing two façade collectors for solar thermal energy generation, which permit a high degree of design flexibility: a strip collector for opaque façade sections and a solar thermal blind for transparent sections. The current state of the two developments will be presented at the BAU 2017 trade fair.
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