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The dark matter interpretation of the 3.5-keV line is inconsistent with blank-sky observations

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Science  27 Mar 2020:
Vol. 367, Issue 6485, pp. 1465-1467
DOI: 10.1126/science.aaw3772

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X-ray data constrain dark matter decay

Dark matter may consist of previously unknown forms of subatomic particles. An unidentified astronomical x-ray emission line has been interpreted as being caused by the decay of a dark matter particle. If this is correct, then dark matter in the halo of the Milky Way Galaxy should produce a faint emission line across the whole sky. Dessert et al. tested this hypothesis using observations by the XMM-Newton (X-ray Multi-Mirror Mission) space telescope. Analyzing blank-sky regions with a total exposure time of about a year, they found no evidence for the predicted line and set upper limits on the decay rate that rule out the previously proposed dark matter interpretation.

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