University > Physics and Astronomy > ITP > Susanne Westhoff > Teaching Summer 2018

Master Seminar "Dark Matter Theory"

Fridays, 11:15 - 13:00, Philosophenweg 19, seminar room.
First meeting: Friday, April 20, 2018.

As of today, we have ample evidence for dark matter based on astrophysical observations. But we know very little about the nature of dark matter. In this seminar, we will explore the hypothesis that dark matter is a new particle, or an entire ensemble of new particles, from a theory perspective. We will discuss what we think are good candidates for dark matter, how it could have been produced in the early universe, and how we search for dark matter in experiments today.


  • Evidence for dark matter
  • Production in the early universe
  • Dark Matter candidates
  • Dark matter-nucleon scattering and direct detection
  • Dark matter annihilation and indirect detection
  • Interactions with the standard model
  • Dark matter production at the LHC
  • Higgs-portal dark matter
  • Supersymmetric dark matter
  • Hidden sectors
  • Dark matter and the baryon asymmetry
  • Axion dark matter

Seminar course

Each student will give a 45-minutes presentation on one of the topics. We will distribute the topics at our first meeting. In addition, you will hand in a write-up of 5-8 pages that summarizes your topic. This write-up is due 2 weeks after your presentation.

If you plan to attend the seminar, please contact me by email: westhoff[at]

What you should know

To be equipped with background knowledge for this seminar, you should have attended at least one of the courses listed below (or equivalent courses).

  • The Standard Model of Particle Physics
  • Quantum Field Theory I/II

Schedule and material

are available here.
If you have been accepted as a participant, please register here.


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