On the separation between baryonic and dark matter: evidence for phantom dark matter?

Alexander Knebe, Claudio Llinares, Xufen Wu, HongSheng Zhao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)


The recent years have seen combined measurements of X-ray and (weak) lensing contours for colliding galaxy clusters such as, for instance, the famous "Bullet" cluster. These observations have revealed offsets in the peaks of the baryonic and (dominant) gravitational matter component of order ~(100-200) kpc. Such discrepancies are difficult to explain using modified theories for gravity other than dark matter. Or are they not? Here we use the concept of "phantom dark matter" that is based upon a Newtonian interpretation of the MONDian gravitational potential. We show that this idea is in fact capable of producing substantial offsets in idealistic density configurations, involving a uniform external field. However, when analysed in a MONDian cosmological framework we deduce that the size (and probablity) of the effect is too small to explain the observed offsets found in the most recent observations, at least in the simplest incarnation of phantom dark matter as discussed here. The lensing centers in merging galaxy clusters are likely very close to the centers of true mass even in a MONDian cosmology. This gives the support to the idea that neutrino-like non-collisional matter might be responsible for the observed offsets of lensing and X-ray peaks.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2285-2290
JournalAstrophysical Journal
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2009


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