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  1. #1
    Lasting_Pain
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    Default What exactly is Anti-Matter

    I was reading my school news paper and interesting article caught my eye. It was about Anti-Matter. I am a seeker of knowledge, so I was instantly hooked. The name Anti-Matter reminds me of Star Wars and Mech Anime, but I digress, if it is possible could someone explain to me what exactly is Anti-Matter and what is its capabilities. I tried to research it, but I was unsuccessful, partially because I am not experienced in the field of physics and chemistry and I hardly understand it. So if someone could explain to me Anti-matter in simple terms, I would greatly appreciate it.

    (On a side note, I am celebrating my 100th post.)

  2. #2
    Habitual Fi LineStepper JocktheMotie's Avatar
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    Anti-matter is the opposite of its matter counterpart. A positron has the same mass, yet opposite charge as it's electron. An anti-proton has the same mass, yet the opposite charge as it's proton. All elementary particles has "anti" versions of themselves. When these two pieces of matter collide, they completely annihilate each other, resulting in a perfect mass=>energy conversion in the form of electromagnetic radiation.

    Theoretically, you could have an anti-matter brother/sister, named Quickly-Alleviated Pain, and if you tried to shake hands you'd both disintegrate and explode as a burst of light.



  3. #3
    Lasting_Pain
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    Quote Originally Posted by JocktheMotie View Post
    Anti-matter is the opposite of it's matter counterpart. A positron has the same mass, yet opposite charge as it's electron. An anti-proton has the same mass, yet the opposite charge as it's proton. All elementary particles has "anti" versions of themselves. When these two pieces of matter collide, they completely annihilate each other, resulting in a perfect mass=>energy conversion in the form of electromagnetic radiation.

    Theoretically, you could have an anti-matter brother/sister, named Quickly-Alleviated Pain, and if you tried to shake hands you'd both disintegrate and explode as a burst of light.
    Wow that is f'in awesome.

    Is it possible to create large amounts of anti-matter?

  4. #4
    Habitual Fi LineStepper JocktheMotie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lasting_Pain View Post
    Wow that is f'in awesome.

    Is it possible to create large amounts of anti-matter?
    Not really, I'm not sure anyone has been able to store a large amount yet. The problem is, you "create" antimatter when you collide particles and atoms at near light speeds in a particle accelerator, but since our visible universe is so dominated by regular matter, antimatter collides with matter and annihilates relatively quickly. You can see it in brief moments inside the accelerator, because it moves through the magnetic field in the opposite direction as it's brother.

    To store it, you would have to hold it inside a magnetic field vacuum. If you let it touch matter, it annihilates. And there really isn't any practical use for it at this point yet.



  5. #5
    Lasting_Pain
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    Quote Originally Posted by JocktheMotie View Post
    Not really, I'm not sure anyone has been able to store a large amount yet. The problem is, you "create" antimatter when you collide particles and atoms at near light speeds in a particle accelerator, but since our visible universe is so dominated by regular matter, antimatter collides with matter and annihilates relatively quickly. You can see it in brief moments inside the accelerator, because it moves through the magnetic field in the opposite direction as it's brother.

    To store it, you would have to hold it inside a magnetic field vacuum. If you let it touch matter, it annihilates. And there really isn't any practical use for it at this point yet.
    Can it be used as a weapon, similar to nuclear energy.

  6. #6
    Magical BlackCat's Avatar
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    SUPER CAT USED ANTI MATTER BEAM! THE WORLD DIES! YOU WIN!

    On a more serious note I've always wondered what Anti-Matter was too, cool.
    () 9w8-3w4-7w6 tritype.

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  7. #7
    Habitual Fi LineStepper JocktheMotie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lasting_Pain View Post
    Can it be used as a weapon, similar to nuclear energy.
    Yes. While electron-positron annihilations produce gamma radiation [not visible, but lethal. It basically kills your cells, but leaves no nuclear fallout radiation], proton-antiproton annihilations do create particles, however their kinetic and mass energies equal that of the two initial proton-antiprotons.

    Antimatter annihilations are more potent than hydrogen bombs, from an energy standpoint. A hydrogen bomb converts .7% of it's mass to energy, while an antimatter bomb would theoretically convert 100% of its mass to energy.



  8. #8
    Lasting_Pain
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    Quote Originally Posted by JocktheMotie View Post
    Yes. While electron-positron annihilations produce gamma radiation [not visible, but lethal. It basically kills your cells, but leaves no nuclear fallout radiation], proton-antiproton annihilations do create particles, however their kinetic and mass energies equal that of the two initial proton-antiprotons.

    Antimatter annihilations are more potent than hydrogen bombs, from an energy standpoint. A hydrogen bomb converts .7% of it's mass to energy, while an antimatter bomb would theoretically convert 100% of its mass to energy.


    So I can become the Hulk if exposed to Anti-Matter?

  9. #9
    Senior Member Jeremy's Avatar
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    So, on this same tangent, what's the difference between antimatter and dark energy / dark matter? I've never really understood the distinction.. is it a possibility that they're the same thing? If so, then inter-galactic travel would be impossible, since the idea is that dark energy holds the universe together.. we'd explode.

    That's sad if its true
    "Can you set me free from this dark inner world? Save me now, last beats in the soul.."

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  10. #10

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    Dark matter and dark energy are hypothesized entities needed to account for observed cosmological phenomenon. So far they seem to me nothing more than accounting tricks (though physicists' accounting tricks regarding mass and energy have long track record of reflecting reality).

    Dark matter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Dark energy - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

    The thing about anti-matter that is so interesting is that there is so little of it compared to matter. Why the preference for matter?

    One glib answer is that if there were equal amounts of matter and anti-matter, they would keep annahialating each other, and then we wouldn't be around to ask the question (nor continue to call the things we do encounter readily as matter, and their anti-particles as anti-matter). This is a very unsatisfying answer.

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