Journal article

Explaining the XENON1T Excess with Luminous Dark Matter

Nicole F Bell, James B Dent, Bhaskar Dutta, Sumit Ghosh, Jason Kumar, Jayden L Newstead

Physical Review Letters | AMER PHYSICAL SOC | Published : 2020


We show that the excess in electron recoil events seen by the XENON1T experiment can be explained by a relatively low-mass luminous dark matter candidate. The dark matter scatters inelastically in the detector (or the surrounding rock) to produce a heavier dark state with a ∼2–3keV mass splitting. This heavier state then decays within the detector, producing a peak in the electron recoil spectrum that is a good fit to the observed excess. We comment on the ability of future direct detection experiments to differentiate this model from other “beyond the standard model” scenarios and from possible tritium backgrounds, including the use of diurnal modulation, multichannel signals, etc., as poss..

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University of Melbourne Researchers


Awarded by National Science Foundation

Awarded by DOE

Funding Acknowledgements

We are grateful for helpful discussions with Rafael Lang and Cara Giovanetti. N. F. B. and J. L. N. were supported in part by the Australian Research Council. J. B. D. acknowledges support from the National Science Foundation under Grant No. NSF PHY-1820801. B. D. and S. G. acknowledge support from DOE Grant No. DE-SC0010813. The work of J. K. is supported in part by DOE Grant No. DE-SC0010504.