Italy

Testing DAMA

An Italian experiment has a 20-year signal of what could be dark matter—and scientists are embarking on their most promising efforts yet to confirm or refute its results. For more than two decades, DAMA has observed a regularly changing signal that its operators think comes from our planet’s movements through the “halo” of dark matter suffusing the Milky Way galaxy.

Physicists often find thrifty, ingenious ways to reuse equipment and resources. What do you do about an 800-ton magnet originally used to discover new particles? Send it off on a months-long journey via truck, train and ship halfway across the world to detect oscillating particles called neutrinos, of course. It’s all part of the vast recycling network of the physics community.

The agreement launches a multinational collaboration to build a powerful new accelerator at DOE’s Fermilab complex. Italy and its National Institute of Nuclear Physics will provide major contributions to the construction of the 176-meter-long superconducting particle accelerator that is the centerpiece of the PIP-II project.

In this 5-minute video, INFN Vice President Antonio Masiero discusses Italy’s long history of innovation in neutrino physics and their role and expertise. They will contribute to the Long-Baseline Neutrino Facility/Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment.

The Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment is advancing technology commonly used in dark matter experiments—and scaling it up to record-breaking sizes.