High Hopes and Low Cross Sections

Dr. Pearl Sandick
Department of Physics and Astronomy
University of Utah

One of the most exciting outstanding puzzles in modern physics is an explanation for the ~80% of the matter density of the universe that we attribute to "dark matter." In this talk, I will discuss the astrophysical evidence for dark matter and how particle candidates for dark matter naturally appear in theories of physics beyond the Standard Model. I will also describe the variety of tactics currently being pursued to observe particle dark matter; directly, by observing dark matter scattering on nuclei, indirectly, by observing its annihilation or decay products, and by producing it in colliders.