Dark Matter is Slowing Down the Milky Way
What is Dark Matter?
Dark matter is believed to be a form of matter thought to account for approximately 85% of the matter in the universe and about 27% of its total mass–energy density or about 2.241×10−27 kg/m3. Its presence is implied in a variety of astrophysical observations, including gravitational effects that cannot be explained by accepted theories of gravity unless more matter is present than can be seen. For this reason, most experts think that dark matter is abundant in the universe and that it has had a strong influence on its structure and evolution. Dark matter is called dark because it does not appear to interact with the electromagnetic field, which means it does not absorb, reflect or emit electromagnetic radiation, and is therefore difficult to detect.
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The effects of dark matter on galaxies is a mystifying and difficult thing to study, but the Milky Way’s galactic bar might present an exciting way to quantify how much of it exists!