As part of a project for determining how matter and antimatters interacts, a group of physicists conducted an experiment using an ion collider. The Force is strong with antiprotons! So concluded the scientists who closely studied how the pair proton-antiproton reacted when they were thrown in together in the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider.
With the courtesy of Brookheaven experimental laboratory, the team led by Doctor Frank Geurts attempted to measure the strong nuclear force between protons and antiprotons. The strong nuclear force is considered to be one of the four fundamental interactions occurring in nature. The other interactions are electromagnetism, the so-called weak interaction and, last, but not least, gravity or rather gravitation.
Traditionally, the proton, one of the subatomic particles that hovers around the around the atom, is considered to be the building block of the Universe. Proton interaction could lead to other atomical formations such as nitrogen or other heavy nuclei.
This is considered to be a true groundbreaking event, because this is the first time scientist were able to measure the force of interaction between antimatter particles.
We have to add that antimatter is extremely scarce in the Universe, although scientists have predicted that following the Big Bang there was an equal number of matter and antimatter elements scattered throughout the Universe.
In order to shed some light on the prevalence of matter in our Universe, researchers set up an experiment involving particle collision. Some 500 million gold collisions were set up in order to see how antiprotons behave at high velocities. Hence, by taking into account the energy, trajectory and velocity of each particle involved in the experiment, they were able identify close encounters between matter and antimatter.
The main difference between matter and antimatter resides in the each particle’s electrical charge. While a proton will always have a positive electrical charge, the antiproton being an antimatter particle, will have a negative charge. Antiprotons are prone to curve in a different directions inside of the magnetic field.
Basically, the results of the study come to offer us a look inside the atom. A strong nuclear force acts like a binding agent: this interaction ensures that antiprotons with the same intensity are bonded. Mirroring this process, the protons tend to behave the same way inside the nuclei of the atoms.
The force is strong with antiprotons or, so says the illustrious paper which concluded that matter and antimatter are arranged symmetrically.
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