Suuuuuperpowers!: Scientists Trap Antimatter

November 19, 2010


Could you tell I was just on the road for 2.5 hours? Haha, I didn't think so! Wait, you could?! The short, unfunny posts gave it all away? Dammit. Now I feel like a maroon. I'm ugly too? Wow, talk about adding insult to injury! Somebody's coma-drinkin' tonight.

So scientists at CERN (who still plan on destroying us all, don't you worry) have successfully created and trapped antimatter. Specifically, anti-hydrogen. That's right folks, AH-bombs: they're coming.

Antimatter is ordinary matter in reverse. Atoms normally consist of positively charged nuclei and negatively charged orbiting electrons. Their antimatter counterparts have negatively charged nuclei and positively charged electrons.

Under a theory expounded in 1928 by the eccentric British physicist Paul Dirac, when energy transforms into matter, it produces a particle and its mirror image - called an anti-particle - which holds the opposite electrical charge.

When particles and anti-particles collide, they annihilate each other in a small flash of energy.

Until now, experiments have produced anti-atoms, namely of hydrogen, but only in a free state. That means they instantly collide with ordinary matter and get annihilated, making it impossible to measure them or study their structure.

So what does this mean to the layperson? Nothing, you'll never get close enough to any antimatter to turn into a superhero. Me though? I've got an insider at CERN. He's gonna sneak me in and I'm gonna gobble up all the antimatter they've got (and, time permitting, snacks in the break-room). Then, who knows. Maybe I'll become a superhero. Or maybe, JUST MAYBE, I'll become my own universe. How crazy would that be? If you answered, "too crazy, you'd make a terrible universe", CONGRATULATIONS ON HURTING MY FEELINGS YET AGAIN. To the bar!

Antimatter discovery: how physicists explore science fiction frontier [telegraph]
Breakthrough! Scientists Create and Capture Antimatter [foxnews]

Thanks to Metallisteve, Jorden, Albert, Malandros, Jon and Dany, who don't care about antimatter as much as they care about antiperspirant. I'm with ya, I sweat like a whore in church.

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