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Colloquium speaker

Matt Walker

Title: Dark Matter in the Smallest Galaxies

Astronomy Spring Colloquia February 7, 2012 Tuesday, 4:30pm-5:30pm, Peyton Hall auditorium:


Abstract: At present the Milky Way's dwarf spheroidal (dSph) satellites
are the smallest objects associated empirically with the phenomenology of
dark matter.  They also exhibit the largest dynamical mass-to-light
ratios, with some estimates reaching several thousand times the solar
value in optical wavelengths.  Insofar as their baryons are dynamically
negligible, dSphs provide a relatively clear window onto the properties of
dark matter within galaxies.  I will present empirical constraints,
derived from stellar kinematics, on the amount and spatial distribution of
dark matter within individual dSphs and will briefly discuss potential
implications for cosmology and particle physics.