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Journal Article

Stellar convective cores as dark matter probes


Casanellas,  Jordi
Astrophysical and Cosmological Relativity, AEI-Golm, MPI for Gravitational Physics, Max Planck Society;

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Casanellas, J., Brandão, I. M., & Lebreton, Y. (2015). Stellar convective cores as dark matter probes. Physical Review D, 91: 103535. doi:10.1103/PhysRevD.91.103535.

Cite as: http://hdl.handle.net/11858/00-001M-0000-0027-7D6D-F
The recent detection of a convective core in a main-sequence solar-type star is used here to test particular models of dark matter (DM) particles, those with masses and scattering cross sections in the range of interest for the DM interpretation of the positive results in several DM direct detection experiments. If DM particles do not effectively self-annihilate after accumulating inside low-mass stars (e.g. in the asymmetric DM scenario) their conduction provides an efficient mechanism of energy transport in the stellar core. For main-sequence stars with masses between 1.1 and 1.3 Msun, this mechanism may lead to the suppression of the inner convective region expected to be present in standard stellar evolution theory. The asteroseismic analysis of the acoustic oscillations of a star can prove the presence/absence of such a convective core, as it was demonstrated for the first time with the Kepler field main-sequence solar-like pulsator, KIC 2009505. Studying this star we found that the asymmetric DM interpretation of the results in the CoGeNT experiment is incompatible with the confirmed presence of a small convective core in KIC 2009505.