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Presented By: Leinweber Center for Theoretical Physics

HET Seminar | Progress & Challenges for Direct-Detection of Sub-GeV Dark Matter

Rouven Essig (Stony Brook)

The search for dark matter with masses between meV-to-GeV has seen tremendous theoretical and experimental progress in the past few years. I will provide an overview of some of this progress. I will mention recent results from SENSEI, a Skipper-CCD-based experiment that is sensitive to (halo) dark matter scattering off electrons for masses larger than ~1 MeV. I will highlight how such detectors can, however, also probe sub-MeV dark matter masses by searching for the component of dark matter that is boosted to higher energies from scattering in the Sun. In particular, future detectors with larger exposures could probe the entire “freeze-in” benchmark model down to keV masses. I will also discuss some challenges for direct detection, in particular, novel low-energy backgrounds. I will introduce a new detector concept, the “dual-sided CCD”, which could help with distinguishing some of these backgrounds.

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