What Would Happen If You Became Dark Matter?
“What if, instead of being made out of Standard Model particles, which experience the full suite of all the fundamental forces, we transitioned to being made out of particles which, to the best of our knowledge, interact only gravitationally? The first thing that would happen to you is that you’d no longer be bound together in any way whatsoever, and that anyone watching you would immediately see you disappear. The nuclear forces that hold your nuclei and protons together would vanish; the electromagnetic forces that caused atoms and molecules to stay together (and light to interact with you) would disappear; your cells and organs and entire body would cease to hold together.”
Here on Earth, everything we know of is made of normal matter, almost exclusively in the form of atoms. But if our understanding of the Universe is correct, there’s five times as much dark matter out there as there is normal matter. Have you ever wondered what would happen to you, a human being, if you spontaneously converted from normal matter into dark matter? Dark matter is fundamentally different from normal matter in a myriad of ways, perhaps most notably for the interactions it doesn’t have. Without the strong, weak, or electromagnetic forces acting on it, it’s effectively invisible to all types of matter and energy, including other dark matter particles. But it continues to interact gravitationally, even as the normal matter making up Earth, the solar system, and the galaxy is affected by everything else. If you gave it enough time and could watch them closely enough, you’d start to see the particles that once made you illustrate this difference.