I am a PhD in theoretical physics. I studied in Santiago de Chile and I specialized in dark matter during my PhD internship at Instituto de física corpúscular (Valencia, Spain). I won a postdoctoral fellowship from ANID with my project called "Shining light on dark matter models" which I am currently developing at Universidad Adolfo Ibáñez. If you want to know more about my current research, click here for my cv and check my Inspire profile .
What is dark matter?
Currently, scientist do not know what dark matter is. The idea of a particle dark matter originates from different astronomical observations that are in conflict with theoretical predictions. One of this is related to the rotation velocity of galaxies. This was investigated by the scientist Vera Rubin. Astronomers can predict many properties of galaxies as the quantity of mass that they contain and the spinning velocity of stars.
Lets think to our galaxies as a merry-go-rounds which contains the stars. Because the galaxy is rotating, the stars want to fly off outside, but the gravity force of all the matter (any celestial object, including stars) can hold them inside the galaxy. Nevertheless, according to astronomical data the velocity of stars and the quantity of matter inside the galaxy is not enough to keep “attached” the stars to the galaxy. The stars should be flying off the edge of this merry-go-round galaxy!
But this does not happen and it looks like the stars are attached by an invisible rope. What is this rope that cannot be seen?
This and other phenomena, gave scientist the idea of the existence of a dark particle, that does not interact with light (and because of that we cannot see it).
There are many different searches that physicists are performing and improving to find dark matter. We can try to see the signals coming from the sky in direct and indirect dark matter searches or look for it when colliding (and destroying) known particles in linear or circular accelerators located in the underground.
Will we find dark matter one day? I do not have an answer to this question but we are trying to do our best to know more and more about the Universe.