The Standard Model of particle physics describes the properties of elementary particles and their interactions remarkably well, but in particular does not account for dark matter. Isotope-shift spectroscopy is a sensitive probe of fifth forces and new particles that illuminate the dark matter sector. This method sets bounds on new bosons that couple neutrons and electrons with masses in the keV/c2 to MeV/c2 range. With increasing spectroscopic precision, such searches are limited by uncertainties of isotope masses and the understanding of nuclear structure. Here, we report on high-precision mass-ratio and isotope-shift measurements of the ytterbium isotopes 168,170,172,174,176Yb that exceed previous measurements by up to two orders of magnitude. From these measurements, we extract higher-order changes in the nuclear charge distribution along the Yb isotope chain and use these to benchmark novel ab initio calculations. Our measurements set new bounds on the existence of the proposed boson.

M. Door, C.-H. Yeh, M. Heinz, K. Blaum et al., „Search for new bosons with ytterbium isotope shifts“, 12. März 2024, arXiv:2403.07792 (2024).


Related to Project B01