Thermalization time scales for WIMP capture by the Sun
August 16, 2017
August 03, 2018
This work concerns the process of dark matter capture by the Sun, under the assumption of a Weakly Interacting Massive Particle (WIMP). Galactic halo WIMPs can collide with atomic nuclei in the solar interior. If they lose enough kinetic energy in such a collision, they will be bound in orbit. With further collisions, they will settle to thermal equilibrium in the Sun's core, where they can annihilate to produce a flux of neutrinos. Observing such a neutrino signal would be a smoking gun of indirect dark matter particle detection. This work aims to examine the process of thermalization for captured WIMPs, using Monte-Carlo integration of WIMP trajectories, given different WIMP-nucleon interaction operators of a non-relativistic effective field theory. The density of thermalized WIMPs are found to adhere to a thermal profile. With the exceptions of some fine-tuned cases, the thermalization time is significantly shorter than the age of the solar system.
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