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Beyond the WIMP: Unique Crystals Could Expand the Search for Dark Matter

A new particle detector design proposed at the U.S. Department of Energy’s Berkeley Lab could greatly broaden the search for dark matter – which makes up 85 percent of the total mass of the universe yet we don’t know what it’s made of – into an unexplored realm.

Chemical Sleuthing Unravels Possible Path to the Formation of Life’s Building Blocks in Space

Scientists have used experiments at Berkeley Lab to retrace the chemical steps leading to the creation of complex hydrocarbons in space. They showed pathways to forming 2-D carbon-based nanostructures in a mix of heated gases.

Can Strongly Lensed Type Ia Supernovae Resolve One of Cosmology’s Biggest Controversies?

Astrophysicists at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) and the Institute of Cosmology and Gravitation at the University of Portsmouth in the U.K. say strongly lensed Type Ia supernovae could help resolve a discrepancy in measurements of the universe’s accelerating expansion.

Ingredients for Life Revealed in Meteorites That Fell to Earth

A detailed study of blue salt crystals found in two meteorites that crashed to Earth – which included X-ray experiments at Berkeley Lab – found that they contain both liquid water and a mix of complex organic compounds including hydrocarbons and amino acids.

Star Mergers: A New Test of Gravity, Dark Energy Theories

Observations and measurements of a neutron star merger have largely ruled out some theories relating to gravity and dark energy, and challenged a large class of theories.

Creating a World of Make-Believe to Better Understand the Real Universe

Scientists are creating simulated universes – complete with dark matter mock-ups, computer-generated galaxies, quasi quasars, and pseudo supernovae – to better understand real-world observations.

How the Earth Stops High-Energy Neutrinos in Their Tracks

In an analysis of data from an experiment embedded in Antarctic ice, a research collaboration including scientists from Berkeley Lab has demonstrated that the Earth stops high-energy neutrinos – particles that only very rarely interact with matter.

A Flight Path to Physics Success

In a previous career with the U.S. Air Force, Sandra Miarecki flew high above the Earth’s surface. She retired from the Air Force in 2007 to pursue a new calling in physics that would set her sights on particles traveling into the depths of the Earth.

The Mystery of the Star That Wouldn’t Die

Berkeley Lab and UC Berkeley scientists were part of a team that helped to decipher one of the most bizarre spectacles ever seen in the night sky: A supernova that refused to stop shining, remaining bright far longer than an ordinary stellar explosion. What caused the event is puzzling.

Scientists Decode the Origin of Universe’s Heavy Elements in the Light from a Neutron Star Merger

On Aug. 17, scientists around the globe were treated to near-simultaneous observations by separate instruments that would ultimately be confirmed as the first measurement of the merger of two neutron stars and its explosive aftermath.