Absorption of Vector Dark Matter Beyond Kinetic Mixing

Kavli Affiliate: Gordan Krnjaic

| First 5 Authors: Gordan Krnjaic, Tanner Trickle, , ,

| Summary:

Massive vector particles are minimal dark matter candidates that motivate a
wide range of laboratory searches, primarily exploiting a postulated kinetic
mixing with the photon. However, depending on the high energy field content,
the dominant vector dark matter (VDM) coupling to visible particles may arise
at higher operator dimension, motivating efforts to predict direct detection
rates for more general interactions. Here we present the first calculation of
VDM absorption through its coupling to electron electric (EDM) or magnetic
(MDM) dipole moments, which can be realized in minimal extensions to the
Standard Model and yield the observed abundance through a variety of mechanisms
across the eV,-,MeV mass range. We compute the absorption rate of the MDM and
EDM models for a general target, and then derive direct detection constraints
from targets currently in use: Si and Ge crystals and Xe and Ar atoms. We find
that current experiments are already sensitive to VDM parameter space
corresponding to a cosmological freeze-in scenario, and future experiments will
be able to completely exclude MDM and EDM freeze-in models with reheat
temperatures below the electroweak scale. Additionally, we find that while
constraints on the MDM interaction can be related to constraints on axion-like
particles, the same is not true for the EDM model, so the latter absorption
rate must be computed from first principles. To achieve this, we update the
publicly available program EXCEED-DM to perform these new calculations.

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