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Using the biggest telescopes in the world, including the Very Large Telescope facility in Chile, the group has made detailed 3D maps of the galaxies, using the movement of their stars to "trace" the impression of the dark matter among them and weigh it very precisely.
With the aid of 7,000 separate measurements, the researchers have been able to establish that the galaxies contain about 400 times the amount of dark matter as they do normal matter.
"The distribution of dark matter bears no relationship to anything you will have read in the literature up to now," explained Professor Gilmore.
"It comes in a 'magic volume' which happens to correspond to an amount which is 30 million times the mass of the Sun.