Hydrogen Portal to Exotic Radioactivity

David McKeen, Maxim Pospelov, Nirmal Raj

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We show that in a special class of dark sector models, the hydrogen atom can serve as a portal to new physics, through its decay occurring in abundant populations in the Sun and on Earth. The large fluxes of hydrogen decay daughter states can be detected via their decay or scattering. By constructing two models for either detection channel, we show that the recently reported excess in electron recoils at xenon1t could be explained by such signals in large regions of parameter space unconstrained by proton and hydrogen decay limits.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number231803
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number23
StatePublished - Dec 1 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
D. M. and N. R. are supported in part by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC). TRIUMF receives funding through a contribution agreement with the National Research Council of Canada (NRC). M. P. is supported in part by U.S. Department of Energy (Grant No. DE-SC0011842).

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