We estimate the event rate for excitation of atomic transition by photinolike dark matter. For excitations of several eV, this event rate can exceed the naive cross section by many orders of magnitude. Although the event rate for these atomic excitations is smaller than that of nuclear recoil off nonzero spin nuclei, the photons emitted by the deexcitation are easier to detect than low-energy nuclear recoils. For many elements, there are several low-lying states with comparable excitation rates; thus, spectral ratios could be used to distinguish signal from background.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Physics and Astronomy(all)