Bringing isolated dark matter out of isolation: Late-time reheating and indirect detection

Adrienne L. Erickcek, Kuver Sinha, Scott Watson

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


In standard cosmology, the growth of structure becomes significant following matter-radiation equality. In nonthermal histories, where an effectively matter-dominated phase occurs due to scalar oscillations prior to big bang nucleosynthesis, a new scale at smaller wavelengths appears in the matter power spectrum. Density perturbations that enter the horizon during the early matter-dominated era (EMDE) grow linearly with the scale factor prior to the onset of radiation domination, which leads to enhanced inhomogeneity on small scales if dark matter (DM) thermally and kinetically decouples during the EMDE. The microhalos that form from these enhanced perturbations significantly boost the self-annihilation rate for dark matter. This has important implications for indirect detection experiments: the larger annihilation rate may result in observable signals from dark matter candidates that are usually deemed untestable. As a proof of principle, we consider binos in heavy supersymmetry with an intermediate extended Higgs sector and all other superpartners decoupled. We find that these isolated binos, which lie under the neutrino floor, can account for the dark matter relic density and decouple from the standard model early enough to preserve the enhanced small-scale inhomogeneity generated during the EMDE. If early forming microhalos survive as subhalos within larger microhalos, the resulting boost to the annihilation rate for bino dark matter near the pseudoscalar resonance exceeds the upper limit established by Fermi-LAT's observations of dwarf spheroidal galaxies. These DM candidates motivate the N-body simulations required to eliminate uncertainties in the microhalos' internal structure by exemplifying how an EMDE can enable Fermi-LAT to probe isolated dark matter.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number063502
JournalPhysical Review D
Issue number6
StatePublished - Sep 7 2016

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nuclear and High Energy Physics


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