Novel Direct Detection Constraints on Light Dark Matter

Torsten Bringmann, Maxim Pospelov

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


All attempts to directly detect particle dark matter (DM) scattering on nuclei suffer from the partial or total loss of sensitivity for DM masses in the GeV range or below. We derive novel constraints from the inevitable existence of a subdominant, but highly energetic, component of DM generated through collisions with cosmic rays. Subsequent scattering inside conventional DM detectors, as well as neutrino detectors sensitive to nuclear recoils, limits the DM-nucleon scattering cross section to be below 10-31 cm2 for both spin-independent and spin-dependent scattering of light DM.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number171801
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number17
StatePublished - May 1 2019
Externally publishedYes

PubMed: MeSH publication types

  • Journal Article

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