Emma Paterson

  • PhD student
  • CDM & EQUS
  • University of Western Australia
  • Road-tripping Alice to Broome (2024)

What do you do?

My research is about trying to discover a dark matter particle.  Dark Matter makes up 80% of the mass of the Universe but is invisible; you can’t see or touch it.  However, it has mass that emits forces that keeps planets and stars in their orbits.  It’s like an invisible glue that helps hold the Universe together.

So, even though dark matter is invisible and we don’t know exactly what it’s made of yet, we know it’s there because it affects things we can see, like stars and galaxies.  We are trying to search for this dark matter using extremely sensitive experiments.

How did you get to where you are today?

I studied a Bachelor of Philosophy (Physics, Computer Science) with Honours in Physics.  I loved physics in high school and knew it was what I wanted to study in university.  It was through my honours project that I got involved with the Quantum Technologies and Dark Matter labs detecting dark matter.

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