Constraints on Dark Matter Properties from Observations of Milky Way Satellite Galaxies

(DES Collaboration)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We perform a comprehensive study of Milky Way (MW) satellite galaxies to constrain the fundamental properties of dark matter (DM). This analysis fully incorporates inhomogeneities in the spatial distribution and detectability of MW satellites and marginalizes over uncertainties in the mapping between galaxies and DM halos, the properties of the MW system, and the disruption of subhalos by the MW disk. Our results are consistent with the cold, collisionless DM paradigm and yield the strongest cosmological constraints to date on particle models of warm, interacting, and fuzzy dark matter. At 95% confidence, we report limits on (i) the mass of thermal relic warm DM, mWDM>6.5 keV (free-streaming length, λfs≲10h-1 kpc), (ii) the velocity-independent DM-proton scattering cross section, σ0<8.8×10-29 cm2 for a 100 MeV DM particle mass [DM-proton coupling, cp≲(0.3 GeV)-2], and (iii) the mass of fuzzy DM, mφ>2.9×10-21 eV (de Broglie wavelength, λdB≲0.5 kpc). These constraints are complementary to other observational and laboratory constraints on DM properties.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number091101
JournalPhysical review letters
Issue number9
StatePublished - Mar 1 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Physics and Astronomy


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