Discovering or Falsifying sub-GeV Thermal Dark Matter
This event is part of the HET Seminar Series.
This talk analyzes the present status of sub-GeV thermal dark matter (DM) annihilating through Standard Model mixing. In these scenarios, the requirement that dark matter have a thermal origin sets a robust sensitivity target for terrestrial experiments that's nearly independently of other DM characteristics (e.g. scalar vs. fermion, symmetric vs. asymmetric). We find that one of the simplest and best-motivated portals between the SM and light DM -- the vector portal -- remains viable for a variety of DM scenarios; other portals (e.g. Higgs mixing) are sharply constrained or ruled out by existing searches. Moreover, it is demonstrated that a small set of future experiments can decisively test these models, providing strong motivation for these efforts.