19-21 September 2023
Europe/Berlin timezone

Searching for New Physics with the NANOGrav Pulsar Timing Array

20 Sep 2023, 14:00
Nachrichtentechnik-Hörsaal (NTI) (KIT)

Nachrichtentechnik-Hörsaal (NTI)


Engesserstraße 5, 76131 Karlsruhe


Kai Schmitz (University of Münster)


NANOGrav, the North American Nanohertz Observatory for Gravitational Waves, recently announced compelling evidence for the existence of a stochastic gravitational-wave background at nanohertz frequencies. This signal may either be of astrophysical origin and stem from a population of supermassive black-hole binaries, or of cosmological origin, reaching us from the early Universe. In this talk, I will focus on the latter possibility and illustrate how the NANOGrav data enables us to probe new physics at the pulsar timing array (PTA) frontier. Specifically, I will show how PTA data allows us to study models of physics beyond the Standard Model at extremely high energies, including scenarios of grand unification and string theory, before I then turn to searches for new physics in our Milky Way, including scenarios of ultra-light dark matter and dark-matter substructures. I will conclude by giving a brief outlook on the future of the field, which is sure to see some spectacular progress in the coming years and decades. This talk is based on 2306.16219.

Primary author

Kai Schmitz (University of Münster)

Presentation Materials

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