Bubble chambers aid search for dark matter
From DiscoveryNews, Nov. 1, 2011
The Tevatron collider shut down at the end of September, but Fermilab physicists are still active in the ongoing search to directly detect dark matter.
To aid in the research they're resurrecting bubble chambers and fixed target experiments dating back to the 1970s.
Bubble chambers are basically vessels filled with superheated liquid to detect particles moving through it. A new experiment underway aims to achieve better calibration for the bubble chambers used in the Chicagoland Observatory for Underground Particle Physics (COUPP) experiment, located 350 feet underground in a Chicago tunnel. It's called the COUPP Iodine Recoil Threshold Experiment (CIRTE), and it's designed to improve the sensitivity of the COUPP detector.
The current working model for the actual "stuff" in the universe calls for only about 4 percent regular matter. The rest of the universe is comprised of dark energy (73 percent), which is causing the expansion of the cosmos to accelerate, and dark matter (about 23 percent).