In a new study, researchers from the University of Ottawa have questioned the current theoretical model of the universe’s composition, which suggests that it is made up of “normal matter”, “dark energy,” and “dark matter”. The study, led by Professor Rajendra Gupta from the Faculty of Science’s Department of Physics, demonstrates that the universe may not have space for dark matter after all.

Dark matter, a term used in cosmology, describes anything that appears not to interact with light or the electromagnetic field, or can only be explained by gravitational force. Although we cannot see it and do not know what it is made of, dark matter helps us understand how galaxies, planets, and stars behave.

Professor Gupta used a combination of the Covariant Coupling Constants (CCC) and the “Tired Light” (TL) theories, known as the CCC+TL model, to reach this conclusion. This model combines two ideas: the weakening of the forces of nature over cosmic time and the loss of energy of light as it travels vast distances. The model has been tested and shown to match several observations, such as how galaxies spread out and how light from the early universe has evolved.

This discovery challenges the prevailing conception of the universe, which suggests that approximately 27% of it is composed of dark matter, less than 5% of ordinary matter, and the rest being dark energy. The study’s findings confirm that the universe, which is estimated to be 26.7 billion years old, does not need dark matter to exist. Professor Gupta explains that the accelerated expansion of the universe is actually due to the weakening of the forces of nature as it expands, rather than dark energy, as suggested by standard cosmology.

The researcher analyzed data from recent works on galaxy distribution at low redshifts and the angular size of the sound horizon in the literature at high redshifts. Redshifts refer to when light shifts towards the red part of the spectrum.

There are several works questioning the existence of dark matter, but mine is the first, to my knowledge, that eliminates its cosmological existence while being consistent with key cosmological observations that we have had time to confirm, states Professor Gupta.


University of Ottawa | Rajendra P. Gupta, Testing CCC+TL Cosmology with Observed Baryon Acoustic Oscillation Features. The Astrophysical Journal (2024). DOI: 10.3847/1538-4357/ad1bc6

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