Dark matter and neutrino mass from the smallest non-Abelian chiral dark sector

Jeffrey M. Berryman, André De Gouvêa, Kevin J. Kelly, Yue Zhang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

33 Scopus citations


All pieces of concrete evidence for phenomena outside the standard model (SM) - neutrino masses and dark matter - are consistent with the existence of new degrees of freedom that interact very weakly, if at all, with those in the SM. We propose that these new degrees of freedom organize themselves into a simple dark sector, a chiral SU(3)×SU(2) gauge theory with the smallest nontrivial fermion content. Similar to the SM, the dark SU(2) is spontaneously broken while the dark SU(3) confines at low energies. At the renormalizable level, the dark sector contains massless fermions - dark leptons - and stable massive particles - dark protons. We find that dark protons with masses between 10 and 100 TeV satisfy all current cosmological and astrophysical observations concerning dark matter even if dark protons are a symmetric thermal relic. The dark leptons play the role of right-handed neutrinos and allow simple realizations of the seesaw mechanism or the possibility that neutrinos are Dirac fermions. In the latter case, neutrino masses are also parametrically different from charged-fermion masses and the lightest neutrino is predicted to be massless. Since the new "neutrino" and "dark-matter" degrees of freedom interact with one another, these two new-physics phenomena are intertwined. Dark leptons play a nontrivial role in early Universe cosmology while indirect searches for dark matter involve, decisively, dark-matter annihilations into dark leptons. These, in turn, may lead to observable signatures at high-energy neutrino and gamma-ray observatories, especially once one accounts for the potential Sommerfeld enhancement of the annihilation cross section, derived from the low-energy dark-sector effective theory, a possibility we explore quantitatively in some detail.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number075010
JournalPhysical Review D
Issue number7
StatePublished - Oct 12 2017

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Physics and Astronomy (miscellaneous)


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