Dark Matter-Dark Energy

Over the recent decades, findings show the possibility that the atoms and particles we commonly know as matter are just a small portion of the total mass in the universe. Because of their still unknown nature, the dominant forms of matter are called Dark Matter and Dark Energy.

The finding represents a blending of conceptual understanding derived from mathematical reasoning and advanced technology in observations, a high achievement of the human intellect.  Further understanding will require knowledge at the smallest, quantum scales.  While most popular press accounts only emphasize the gravitational anomalies that support this idea, there are also parallel lines of evidence from particle physics and from analysis of the Cosmic Microwave Background Radiation.

We will look first at why scientists think there is dark matter and dark energy, and then why they would not be any form of matter that we currently know. Finally we will look at ideas that might provide an answer.

This program is not intended for children as an audience, but children 12 and older who like astronomy and science may enjoy attending with their parent(s).  If you are a teacher who is working with these concepts in your class by all means feel free to book this for your students.

Following are Massachusetts Science Curriculum topics that are addressed in this program:

6-8
Earth and Space Science
Earth in the Solar System
8. Gravity is a force that pulls all things toward the center of the earth. Gravity influences the formation and movement of the planets, stars, and solar system.

HS
Earth and Space Science
Matter and Energy in the Earth System
1.2 Describe the characteristics of electromagnetic radiation and give examples of its impact on life and Earth’s systems.

Universe Origins and Evolution Of
4.1 Explain the Big Bang Theory and discuss the evidence that supports it, such as background radiation and relativistic Doppler effect (i.e., “red shift”).

Chemistry
2 Atomic Structure and Nuclear Chemistry

2.2 Identify the major components (protons, neutrons, and electrons) of the nuclear atom and explain how they interact.

SIS3. Analyze and interpret results of scientific investigations.

SIS4. Communicate and apply the results of scientific investigations.

Physics
4.6 Describe the apparent change in frequency of waves due to the motion of a source or a receiver (the Doppler effect).

6.2 Describe the electromagnetic spectrum in terms of frequency and wavelength, and identify the locations of radio waves, microwaves, infrared radiation, visible light (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet), ultraviolet rays, x-rays, and gamma rays on the spectrum.

 

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Additional details are at the bottom of the main programs page

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