Exploring the WIMP Parameter Space Above and Below the Neutrino Floor Grant uri icon


  • This award funds the research activities on dark matter of Professor Louis Strigari at Indiana University. Dark matter comprises about 80% of the total matter in the Universe. However, it has not yet been directly detected and its identify remains a mystery. A leading candidate for dark matter would be a new elementary particle of nature, and identifying this particle is one of the foremost goals of modern science. The research within this project provides a crucial input to experiments that are searching for dark matter particles over the course of the next decade.As the various experimental searches for particle dark matter increase in size and improve in sensitivity, new challenges will arise in attempts to extract a possible signal. For direct dark matter searches, an important background in the future will be the "neutrino floor"; this is defined as the scale at which detectors are large enough to detect neutrinos produced from the Sun, atmosphere, and supernovae. Detectors are now fast approaching the scale at which these neutrinos will appear, so it is imperative to make a concerted effort towards understanding their spectra so that they may be properly identified. The funding under this award will be utilized to study theoretical and experimental methods to reduce the uncertainty on the neutrino backgrounds in dark matter detectors. The work will involve theoretical predictions, statistical data modeling, and analysis of many modern dark matter and neutrino experiments.

date/time interval

  • 2014 - 2018