Scientists at CERN in Geneva have recently discovered the color of antimatter. They call it an “unprecedented color,” revealed by its structure. When the universe was created, matter and antimatter were equal, but today, antimatter is very rare. CERN’s latest research tries to understand why there is more matter than antimatter and the color they have discovered was weirdly familiar to them.
That is because the color of antimatter is similar to the color of the matter.
Studying antimatter is very difficult because everything we use to store and analyze antimatter is made of matter. When they come in contact, they annihilate and they result in producing energy. The team at CERN’s ALPHA project was the first one to not only produce antihydrogen, but they were also able to contain them in 2010.
The Best Precision in Measurements after 30 Years of Trials
Now, the team focuses on optical properties of the antimatter and the difference between them and those of the regular matter.
According to a press release by CERN, their latest studies have improved in precision:
“The precision achieved in the latest study is the ultimate accomplishment for us. We have been trying to achieve this precision for 30 years and have finally done it. This particular measurement in hydrogen is the most precisely measured quantity in physics. It’s measured to 15 decimal places. In the recent paper we got it to 12 decimal places.”
Not only was the team able to measure the color of antihydrogen at its lowest energy, but they could measure it during its excited state.
The team of scientists has discovered that hydrogen and antihydrogen look similar. But they’re still hoping to find a small difference after more detailed experiments. For more information, check out the journal Nature, where CERN’s study on the color of antimatter was recently published.
Andre Blair s is the lead editor for Advocator.ca. He holds a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Toronto, and a Master of Science in Public Health (M.S.P.H.) from the School of Public Health, Department of Health Administration, at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Andre specializes in environmental health, but writes on a variety of issues.