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Cosmic Bubbles May Have Forged Dark Matter, New Theory Suggests

In the new study, the team assumed that in the fractions of a second after the big bang, the plasma underwent a phase transition similar to what happens now when matter moves from one state to another, such as when bubbles of water vapor form in a pot of boiling water, or steam cools down to form water droplets. In this scenario, bubbles of cooled plasma formed abruptly in the boiling soup of the early universe. These bubbles expanded and merged until the whole universe transitioned to a new phase. “As these droplets expanded throughout the universe, they acted like filters that sifted dark matter particles out of the plasma,” Andrew Long said. “In this way, the amount of dark matter that we measure in the universe today is a direct result of this filtration in the first fractions of a second after the big bang.”

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