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Space China

China Launches Dark Matter Space Probe (nature.com) 71

hackingbear writes: China's Dark Matter Particle Explorer Satellite Wukong, named after the fictional character Monkey King, was successfully launched at the Jiuquan Satellite Launch Center in Gansu province on Thursday. The probe will be in service for three years to observe the direction, energy and electric charge of high-energy particles in space in search of dark matter. Two further missions will blast off next year: the world's first quantum-communications satellite and an X-ray telescope observing in a unique energy band. Together, these missions mark a new start for space science in China which previously focused on non-science missions, says Wu Ji, director-general of the National Space Science Centre (NSSC).
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China Launches Dark Matter Space Probe

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  • For the next few years the Chinese will be probing around Uranus looking for dark matter?
    • For the next few years the Chinese will be probing around Uranus looking for dark matter?

      And all they'll find is klingons :-)

      • For the next few years the Chinese will be probing around Uranus looking for dark matter?

        And all they'll find is klingons :-)

        Eeeeww... [urbandictionary.com]

  • by ITRambo ( 1467509 ) on Friday December 18, 2015 @12:36AM (#51141659)
    Check this link to find out where dark matter may lie in earth's neighborhood twice the distance to the moon. http://www.jpl.nasa.gov/news/n... [nasa.gov]
  • The funkiest monkey that ever popped.

  • Wukong (a.k.a. Goku) literally means to have an epiphany/understanding about/of the void(/er, dark matter?). The two Chinese characters used in the name are typical for naming Buddhist disciples As you may know, the Monkey King is such a disciple in the novel Journey to the West, a tome with heavy Chinese Buddhist themes.
  • ...in space. The US has tucked up their balls and walked away from the field.

  • I have a question. You know how the voyager space probes made it as far as they did and the tiny, tiny, mega super tiny force in one direction that was unknown was determined to be the equal and opposite reaction from infrared photons leaving one side of the craft? NASA noticed something that tiny and verified it with calculations. If dark matter existed, wouldn't that have had a similar pull on one of the probes? It traveled through the entire solar system and saw absolutely no gravitational interferen
    • I have a question. You know how the voyager space probes made it as far as they did and the tiny, tiny, mega super tiny force in one direction that was unknown was determined to be the equal and opposite reaction from infrared photons leaving one side of the craft? NASA noticed something that tiny and verified it with calculations. If dark matter existed, wouldn't that have had a similar pull on one of the probes? It traveled through the entire solar system and saw absolutely no gravitational interference at all from unknown mass. I'd consider that a pretty effective probe that's accidentally looking for dark matter.

      It's a good questions. I would bet, especially with the that latest theories that passage of the sun and planets through the dark matter cloud would cause some high density filaments to form, like wake from the passing boat. Somebody could get the voyager data, look for deviations in expected movement, figure out the suspected location of filaments at the time, do the gravitational equations for the filaments, and see if the math fits the data. Problem one is that is all on current understanding which no do

    • That puts limits on the amount of dark matter that can be in something of a clump near Voyager's trajectory, but observing spacecraft movement is a very, very inexact way to measure gravity. Moreover, dark matter doesn't interact with itself like normal matter does, so it doesn't clump on this scale. If dark matter were evenly distributed, it would not have a significant effect on spacecraft movement. It's also very sparse, so the total amount in the Solar system may be well below what we could detect g

    • by Altrag ( 195300 )

      The EM force is also significantly stronger than gravity -- the effect of those few infrared photons is probably millions of times more powerful than any gravitation you'd feel from dark matter (or real matter, for that matter.. Remember there's still dust and other shit here and there in space that will all be exerting gravitational pull but its so small that its undetectable.)

      EM is something like of 10^36 times more powerful than gravity http://hyperphysics.phy-astr.gsu.edu/hbase/forces/couple.html [gsu.edu] (I'm

  • If they think that finding and understanding dark matter is what China hopes will make them a military power greater than the US

    • by Altrag ( 195300 )

      I don't know why they would. China might still be semi-communist and definitely has a bad track record for human rights, but for all of that they're still a billion people with a billion sets of hopes and ambitions. There are lots of scientists in China that do their work because they believe it will help humanity, just as there is plenty of them elsewhere with that belief.

      Similarly there will be people in government who are looking further to the future than the next war and will be willing to back fundi

  • I just read an (old) article this morning about using gold and DNA to detect dark matter.

    I'm not a physicist and really know nothing about the subject, but it would be interesting to know if the Chinese are attempting to detect dark matter using the aforementioned substances.

    Article here [wired.com].

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