Shedding Light on Baryonic Dark Matter

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Science  01 Feb 1991:
Vol. 251, Issue 4993, pp. 537-541
DOI: 10.1126/science.251.4993.537


Halo dark matter, if it is baryonic, may plausibly consist of compact stellar remnants. Jeans mass clouds containing 106 to 108 solar masses could have efficiently formed stars in the early universe and could plausibly have generated, for a suitably top-heavy stellar initial mass function, a high abundance of neutron stars as well as a small admixture of long-lived low mass stars. Within the resulting clusters of dark remnants, which eventually are tidally disrupted when halos eventually form, captures of neutron stars by non-degenerate stars resulted in formation of close binaries. These evolve to produce, by the present epoch, an observable x-ray signal associated with dark matter aggregations in galaxy halos and galaxy cluster cores.