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This Brainless Organism is Mapping Dark Matter

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 Physics   |   Science
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The food-seeking behavior of slime mold is helping astronomers map dark matterheres how.
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Scientists are trying to map the shape of the largest thing in the universe, and as you might expect, its proved challenging.

So in an attempt to speed up the process researchers are turning to slime mold.

Now you might be asking, "what even is the cosmic web?

The cosmic web is a large, mysterious network of interconnected filaments made up of dark matter and gasthese filaments connect galaxies, operating as the scaffolding of the universe. And as weve mentioned, the cosmic web is incredibly hard to map.

So a team at the University of California Santa Cruz sifted through enormous amounts of archived data and then used an algorithm inspired by the slime mold Physarum polycephalum.

Find out more about how these researchers are using slime mold to map dark matter and what this could mean for our future understanding of the cosmic web and the intricacies of the entire universe.

#darkmatter #slime #cosmicmap #astronomy #science #space #seeker #elements

What Has No Brain, 720 Sexes, And the Ability to Self-Heal?!
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZhc8R58R7k

Read More:
Slime Mold Simulations Used to Map Dark Matter Holding Universe Together
https://www.nasa.gov/feature/goddard/2020/slime-mold-simulations-used-to-map-dark-matter-holding-universe-together/
"The behavior of one of nature's humblest creatures is helping astronomers probe the largest structures in the universe."

Modeling the Universe with Slime Mold
https://medium.com/the-cosmic-companion/modeling-the-universe-with-slime-mold-63f69c7f6a28
Wherever the slime mold model predicted a ribbon would form, researchers found gas. These deposits were more concentrated near their centers, as predicted by models. Where gas was most concentrated, the signal dropped out. This was also expected, as gas in those regions is heated until electrons within the atoms are driven off, eliminating the absorption spectra.

Lowly slime molds are helping us map out the cosmos
https://www.popsci.com/story/space/slime-mold-predicts-shape-of-universe/
Slime molds dont think, but they can calculate. The single-celled organisms fend for themselves during times of plenty, but when the going gets tough they band together into a collective creature displaying exploration, learning, and memory in its hunt for foodnot bad for creatures without brains or nervous systems. One variety in particular, Physarum polycephalum, has become a darling of researchers in many fields, whove harnessed its pioneering nature to analyze everything from ancient roads to modern shoppers. Now, astronomers have designed a digital version of the organism to study the cosmos itself.
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