Josef Pradler


Dr. Josef Pradler

Österreichische Akademie der Wissenschaften
Institut für Hochenergiephysik
Nikolsdorfer Gasse 18
1050 Wien



Tel.: +43 1 5158128 11

Experimental limits for current dark matter detectors.

Experimental limits for current and planned Dark Matter detectors.

Despite the overwhelming success of the Standard Model in the description of nature, we know it is not complete. A long history of observed deviations from Newtonian predictions that are based on the gravitational attraction of visible gaseous and stellar components points towards the existence of an non-luminous, gravitating mass-component in the Universe, Dark Matter. It is widely believed that this problem of missing mass finds its solution within the realm of particle physics, in form of a new particle or an entire hidden sector of particles beyond the Standard Model with its microscopic properties remaining largely unknown.

Pradler’s group is primarily concerned with physics beyond the Standard Model that is connected to the Dark Matter problem. The Dark Matter problem is approached in a phenomenologically driven fashion, i.e., by putting a special emphasis on the testability of the proposed scenarios in particle physics experiment and astrophysical observation. Much of Pradler’s research efforts revolve around finding novel signatures of physics beyond the Standard Model and to devise strategies to experimentally test them. A topical focus lies on the direct detection of Dark Matter in rare underground event searches. Astrophysical and early Universe implications of the considered Dark Matter scenarios complement the bigger picture. A particular interest lies in exploring various generation mechanisms of Dark Matter and to look for cosmological signatures of the hidden sector. In absence of a laboratory signal of DM, astrophysical observables as well as cosmological concordance tests provide valuable insight into the possible dynamics of the hidden sector in the low- and high-redshift Universe, respectively.