The Absurd Search For Dark Matter

The very first 200 folks to sign up via get 20% off a yearly subscription. Astronomers think there should be 5 times as much dark matter as ordinary matter – a shadow universe that makes up most of the mass in the universe. But after decades of trying, no experiments have found any trace of dark matter – except one.

A gigantic thanks to the fabulous folks at the ARC Centre of Excellence for Dark Matter Physics for showing us around and being on camera – Fleur Morrison, A/Prof Phillip Urquijo, Prof Elisabetta Barberio, Madeleine Zurowski and Grace Lawrence.
Thanks to Leo Fincher-Johnson and everybody at the Stawell gold mine for having us.
Gigantic thanks to Prof. Geraint Lewis – Geraint has been Veritasium’s go-to expert for anything astrophysics and cosmology associated. Please check out his webpage, and purchase his books, they are terrific –
Thanks to Prof. Timothy Tait for the help to make sure we got the technology right.

Galaxy cluster simulation from IllustrisTNG –
Venn Diagram of Dark Matter from Tim Tait –
The Projectile Cluster Image from Magellan, Hubble and Chandra telescopes –
Bullet cluster animation from Andrew Robertson / Institute for Computational Cosmology / Durham University –

Bernabei, R., Belli, P., Cappella, F., Cerulli, R., Dai, C. J., d’Angelo, A., … & Ye, Z. P. (2008). First outcomes from DAMA/LIBRA and the compounded outcomes with DAMA/NaI. The European Physical Journal C, 56(3), 333-355. –

Zwicky, F. (1933). Die rotverschiebung von extragalaktischen nebeln. Helvetica physica acta, 6, 110-127. –

Zwicky, F. (1937). On the Masses of Nebulae and of Clusters of Nebulae. The Astrophysical Journal, 86, 217. –

Rubin, V. C., & Ford Jr, W. K. (1970). Rotation of the Andromeda nebula from a spectroscopic poll of emission areas. The Astrophysical Journal, 159, 379. –

Bosma, A., & Van der Kruit, P. C. (1979). The local mass-to-light ratio in spiral galaxies. Astronomy and Astrophysics, 79, 281-286. –

Milgrom, M. (1983). A modification of the Newtonian dynamics as a potential alternative to the hidden mass assumption. The Astrophysical Journal, 270, 365-370. –

Sanders, R. H., & McGaugh, S. S. (2002). Modified Newtonian dynamics alternatively to dark matter. Annual Review of Astronomy and Astrophysics, 40(1), 263-317. –

M. Markevitch; A. H. Gonzalez; D. Clowe; A. Vikhlinin; L. David; W. Forman; C. Jones; S. Murray & W. Tucker (2004). “Direct constraints on the dark matter self-interaction cross-segment from the merging galaxy cluster 1E0657-56”. Astrophys. J. 606 (2): 819–824. –

Terrific web site about the CMB –

Galli, S., Iocco, F., Bertone, G., & Melchiorri, A. (2009). CMB constraints on dark matter models with huge annihilation cross section. Physical Review D, 80(2), 023505. –

Antonello, M., Barberio, E., Baroncelli, T., Benziger, J., Bignell, L. J., Bolognino, I., … & Xu, J. (2019). The SABRE project and the SABRE Proof-of-Principle. The European Physical Journal C, 79(4), 1-8. –

Special thanks to Patreon advocators: Inconcision, Kelly Snook, TTST, Ross McCawley, Balkrishna Heroor, Chris LaClair, Avi Yashchin, John H. Austin, Jr.,, Dmitry Kuzmichev, Matthew Gonzalez, Eric Sexton, john kiehl, Anton Ragin, Diffbot, Micah Mangione, MJP, Gnare, Dave Kircher, Burt Humburg, Blake Byers, Dumky, Evgeny Skvortsov, Meekay, Bill Linder, Paul Peijzel, Josh Hibschman, Mac Malkawi, Michael Schneider, jim buckmaster, Juan Benet, Ruslan Khroma, Robert Blum, Richard Sundvall, Lee Redden, Vincent, Stephen Wilcox, Marinus Kuivenhoven, Clayton Greenwell, Michael Krugman, Cy ‘kkm’ K’Nelson, Sam Lutfi, Ron Neal

Written by Derek Muller and Petr Lebedev
Edited by Trenton Oliver
Animation by Ivy Tello and Mike Radjabov
Filmed by Derek Muller and Petr Lebedev
Additional video/photos supplied by Getty Image
B-roll supplied by Stawell Gold Mine
Music from Epidemic Sound
Produced by Derek Muller, Petr Lebedev, and Emily Zhang


  1. Daniel Schmider

    “Dunkl Materee”? 4:14
    its German, not some kind of codeword, are you joking?

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  2. Gravity Darkside

    Wait wait .. what ?
    Radon Gas Detectable right Now ? lols

  3. Yuan Epilepsia

    But the question is, does it matter tho?

  4. Dark Matter is the scientific evidence for the Methaphysical World (imo at least)

  5. Gaemlin Sidoharthi


  6. Shawn Ravenfire

    Could the detector also be set off by other particles, like neutrinos or the Higgs field?

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  7. Dark mater should be called ether

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  8. It’s remarkable how many studies have failed to find dark matter, yet, we are still convinced it exists.

  9. You say “zipping around,” but my understanding of dark matter was that it’s not actually moving very fast/at all?

  10. Interesting. I do what what the carbon footprint of these amazing projects is, though. Noone ever seems to ask.

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