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Thread: What exactly is antimatter?

  1. #1 What exactly is antimatter? 
    A cyborg Werwolf xDARTHWOLFx's Avatar
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    You see, It was proven that antimatter exists, but what exactly is it? If it isn't matter then it can't exist... So how could scientists "prove" it exists? Matter is anything that has Mass, volume, takes up space, ETC. if something ISN'T matter, I can't exist... So someone please help me!


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    Quote Originally Posted by xDARTHWOLFx View Post
    Matter is anything that has Mass, volume, takes up space, ETC. if something ISN'T matter, I can't exist... So someone please help me!
    When physicists use the word "antimatter" they don't mean to say it's the opposite of matter. I know it's confusing for them to be using the word when they don't mean to say what the word implies. However they are doing so.

    Anti-matter has all the same basic properties that normal matter has. Antimatter has mass and volume and takes up space.

    The only thing about it that is different from normal matter is that it has the opposite electrical charge (the opposite charge is the reason why they use the prefix "Anti" - matter to describe it.)

    An anti-electron, for example, is an electron that has a positive charge instead of a negative charge (most electrons have a negative charge.) If an anti-electron (or "positron") comes into contact with a normal electron it combines with it and they explode. (Or you could say they annihilate each other and emit a lot of photons.)


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    A cyborg Werwolf xDARTHWOLFx's Avatar
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    So I get 100000 negative and positive electrons and mix them up and throw them at a zombie it would explode? Lol. Thanks anyway that REALLY helps!
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    Quote Originally Posted by xDARTHWOLFx View Post
    So I get 100000 negative and positive electrons and mix them up and throw them at a zombie it would explode? Lol. Thanks anyway that REALLY helps!
    You wouldn't have time to throw them, they'd take off your hand first.
    Its the way nature is!
    If you dont like it, go somewhere else....
    To another universe, where the rules are simpler
    Philosophically more pleasing, more psychologically easy
    Prof Richard Feynman (1979) .....

    Das ist nicht nur nicht richtig, es ist nicht einmal falsch!"
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    Quote Originally Posted by xDARTHWOLFx View Post
    So I get 100000 negative and positive electrons and mix them up and throw them at a zombie it would explode? Lol. Thanks anyway that REALLY helps!
    If the zombie is made of normal matter, then you could just throw the positive electrons at him, and the negative electrons from his own body would combine with them and explode.

    You understand, though, right? It's just like normal matter in every single other way. The only difference is the charge.
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    A cyborg Werwolf xDARTHWOLFx's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by xDARTHWOLFx View Post
    So I get 100000 negative and positive electrons and mix them up and throw them at a zombie it would explode? Lol. Thanks anyway that REALLY helps!
    If the zombie is made of normal matter, then you could just throw the positive electrons at him, and the negative electrons from his own body would combine with them and explode. You understand, though, right? It's just like normal matter in every single other way. The only difference is the charge.
    that completely makes sense. I have my zombie survival kit ready now...
    Don't argue with me. You will lose.
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    Anti-matter is one of the most confusing concepts in all of astronomy and cosmology.
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    Brassica oleracea Strange's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by kojax View Post
    It's just like normal matter in every single other way. The only difference is the charge.
    For the sake of accuracy, it is worth pointing out that it is not quite as simple as that. But that is probably good enough for this level of discussion (zombies!?)
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    Quote Originally Posted by xDARTHWOLFx View Post
    So I get 100000 negative and positive electrons and mix them up and throw them at a zombie it would explode? Lol. Thanks anyway that REALLY helps!
    100000 electrons doesn't amount to much. The total energy released by said explosion would about equal to that of a 9mm bullet moving at only 2 meters/hr. You'd have more of an effect if you threw marshmallows at him. Not only that, but there are going to be a lot of atoms (in the form of air) between you and the zombie which have their own electrons that will react to the positrons before they even get to the zombie.
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    "Antimatter" is an unproven hypothesis about weird "opposite" matter that annihilates matter when the two come into contact. It is based on an observed inherent mathematical symmetry that has been erroneously applied to reality.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    "Antimatter" is an unproven hypothesis about weird "opposite" matter that annihilates matter when the two come into contact. It is based on an observed inherent mathematical symmetry that has been erroneously applied to reality.
    It is hardly unproven. It is in daily use in all sorts of technology.
    Without wishing to overstate my case, everything in the observable universe definitely has its origins in Northamptonshire -- Alan Moore
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    It is hardly unproven. It is in daily use in all sorts of technology.
    I'm well familiar with the belief system, I simply don't have faith in it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    It is hardly unproven. It is in daily use in all sorts of technology.
    I'm well familiar with the belief system, I simply don't have faith in it.
    You think technology is a "belief system". Perhaps you could stop believing in your computer and stop posting ignorant nonsense.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    You think technology is a "belief system". Perhaps you could stop believing in your computer and stop posting ignorant nonsense.
    You're confused. Technology is not the belief system to which I refer. Bone up on your reading comprehension.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    "Antimatter" is an unproven hypothesis about weird "opposite" matter that annihilates matter when the two come into contact. It is based on an observed inherent mathematical symmetry that has been erroneously applied to reality.
    I thought it was a bit more solid than that. A NASA scientist I was talking to about interstellar space travel was of the opinion that antimatter was the only cost effective fuel posible for inter stellar flight but stated that the current world production of antimatter was less than 1 gram per year. For there to be a current world production value there has to be some realworld production.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sealeaf View Post
    I thought it was a bit more solid than that.
    You thought wrongly.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Sealeaf View Post
    I thought it was a bit more solid than that.
    You thought wrongly.
    Do you have anything of substance to say. Or are just going to make empty assertions "disproving" well established science and technology?

    Or should we just take what you say as The Truth with no supporting evidence?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    You're confused. Technology is not the belief system to which I refer.
    There is technology that uses antimatter. What should I "believe"; an ignorant dolt on the Internet or working, useful technology? Hmmm.... tricky.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    are just going to make empty assertions "disproving" well established science and technology?
    You're confused. To say that "antimatter" is established science is false in the extreme. Don't make the mistake of concluding every widespread belief is "established science".

    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    Or should we just take what you say as The Truth with no supporting evidence?
    You're confused. The burden of proof is always on the claimant, never the skeptic. If you believe antimatter exists feel free to prove it. One can't simply invent a phenomenon and expect that reality will provide it for them, beliefs should be based on evidence.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    There is technology that uses antimatter.
    Yes, I'm well familiar with the belief system, I simply don't have faith in it.

    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    What should I "believe"; an ignorant dolt on the Internet or working, useful technology? Hmmm.... tricky.
    You should absolutely not "believe an ignorant dolt". This is aside from the fact that technology exists, a fact which really has nothing to do with this discussion.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    There is technology that uses antimatter.
    Yes, I'm well familiar with the belief system, I simply don't have faith in it.
    This is aside from the fact that technology exists, a fact which really has nothing to do with this discussion.
    So you accept that there is technology that uses antimatter, you just don't believe in the antimatter. Got it.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Strange View Post
    So you accept that there is technology that uses antimatter, you just don't believe in the antimatter. Got it.
    I absolutely do not share your faith-based belief in "antimatter" nor do I expect that any technology relies on its existence to function. Bone up on your reading comprehension, it will save you making a lot of errors.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    I absolutely do not share your faith-based belief in "antimatter"
    No faith required.
    It exists.

    nor do I expect that any technology relies on its existence to function
    Then get an education.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    It exists.
    I'm unconvinced by your bald assertions backed up by nothing more than consensus of opinions.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    I absolutely do not share your faith-based belief in "antimatter" .
    Antihydrogen - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Anti-Helium Discovered in the Heart of STAR « Berkeley Lab News Center
    US scientists get glimpse of antihelium | Science | The Guardian
    BBC News - Antihydrogen undergoes its first-ever measurement
    Antimatter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
    Antimatter - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia


    You have no idea what is scientifically supported and what is not. Rather, you start with a belief, then look for support for that belief while disregarding anything that refutes your beliefs. You can try playing the word games-projecting your own behavior if you like... but you are fooling no one.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    You have no idea what is scientifically supported and what is not.
    I can make an equally valid competing claim about you. It's going to take more than a few blog posts to support your "antimatter" hypothesis. If you're going to prove the existence of something the first step is to define what it is you think exists. Can you even do that? Feel free to describe this "antimatter" in as much detail as you can muster. If you try to do so and remain objective you'll quickly see that you stray off into hallucinatory terrain.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    I'm unconvinced by your bald assertions backed up by nothing more than consensus of opinions.
    And, likewise, I'm unconvinced by your assertions, with nothing to back them up.
    See how it works?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    It's going to take more than a few blog posts to support your "antimatter" hypothesis.
    Actually, you can start by refuting the list of links I posted, instead.
    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    If you're going to prove the existence of something the first step is to define what it is you think exists. Can you even do that? Feel free to describe this "antimatter" in as much detail as you can muster. If you try to do so and remain objective you'll quickly see that you stray off into hallucinatory terrain.
    Nice word salad.

    The links, please.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    And, likewise, I'm unconvinced by your assertions, with nothing to back them up.
    See how it works?
    The difference is you are convinced something exists and you offer no evidence to support that belief. I am skeptical and unconvinced due to that same lack of evidence. Really we're on the same side, you're just in denial about it. You offer nothing to support your beliefs and I also offer nothing to support your absurd beliefs. See how it works?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Actually, you can start by refuting the list of links I posted, instead.
    I have no interest in refuting the links you posted, I have no doubt they are links.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    I have no interest in refuting the links you posted, I have no doubt they are links.
    Then you have failed to demonstrate scientific support for your claims and those claims of yours can be discarded by any rational skeptic.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Then you have failed to demonstrate scientific support for your claims and those claims of yours can be discarded by any rational skeptic.
    You're confused. The claim here is that there is this weird "antimatter" that is identical to ordinary matter except opposite in charge and which annihilates ordinary matter when the two come into contact with an abundant release of energy. We see no evidence anywhere that any such weird matter exists, despite the shrill protestations to the contrary. It is a belief that is based on mathematical abstraction and faith. Not every hypothetical mathematical concept has an empirical referent, in fact virtually no math has any physical component in reality. Confusion between the real and the imaginary is common among people with faith-based belief systems.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    I have no interest in refuting the links you posted, I have no doubt they are links.
    IOW: "Don't bother me with facts, I want to retain my ignorance".
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    You're confused.
    And you're dishonest.

    We see no evidence anywhere that any such weird matter exists
    Wrong. YOU "see no evidence", since you won't look.
    Links have been provided.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    Confusion between the real and the imaginary is common among people with faith-based belief systems.
    The consistent refusal to support your claims whereas I have supported mine can lead only to any further claims and word salad, fallacies and handwaiving from you can be ignored.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    I have no interest in refuting the links you posted, I have no doubt they are links.
    IOW: "Don't bother me with facts, I want to retain my ignorance".
    I'm well familiar with the faith-based belief in "antimatter" and the various claims made about this hypothetical stuff. If you were as familiar as the material as I am perhaps you'd be less inclined to believe in it as well. And still I see you offering no support for your claim that it even exists.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    And still I see you offering no support for your claim that it even exists.
    Liar. The most stubborn kind, as well, considering the links were clearly provided and you refuse to acknowledge them. What a most interesting display of faith based delusion while the deluded party accuses others of the delusion...
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    You're confused.
    And you're dishonest.

    We see no evidence anywhere that any such weird matter exists
    Wrong. YOU "see no evidence", since you won't look.
    Links have been provided.
    You haven't provided any evidence, just links to some stories. You haven't even defined what it is you mean by "antimatter" so we're all just left to guess what it is you actually do believe. If you want to prove this idea you first have to explain the idea. Offering random data and speculative stories about it aren't going to make your case that this weird stuff exists.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    Confusion between the real and the imaginary is common among people with faith-based belief systems.
    The consistent refusal to support your claims whereas I have supported mine can lead only to any further claims and word salad, fallacies and handwaiving from you can be ignored.
    You haven't even made any claims, in particular you have not even defined what it is you think "antimatter" even is, let alone offered any reasons for why you think it should exist in the first place. To say that you have supported the nonexistent claims you haven't made is the height of absurdity. Are you deliberately trying to be ironic or are you accidentally being hilariously funny?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    I'm well familiar with the faith-based belief in "antimatter"
    (Falsely) calling it "faith based" indicates that you're not familiar with science.

    and the various claims made about this hypothetical stuff.
    (Falsely) calling it hypothetical indicates your claim of familiarity is erroneous.

    If you were as familiar as the material as I am
    Ooh! A vague unsupported hand-wavey claim to... something. Wow! I'm impressed with your "credentials" and bow to your superior knowledge.

    And still I see you offering no support for your claim that it even exists.
    Is that because you won't look at the links?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    And still I see you offering no support for your claim that it even exists.
    Liar. The most stubborn kind, as well, considering the links were clearly provided and you refuse to acknowledge them. What a most interesting display of faith based delusion while the deluded party accuses others of the delusion...
    If I was going to lie I'd say I have a yard of dick, a bucket full of balls and enough hair on my ass to weave a persian rug. No, this is reality hitting you, and the reality is this "antimatter" is unproven conjecture based on mathematical abstraction and nothing else.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    (Falsely) calling it "faith based" indicates that you're not familiar with science.
    I'm not convinced you know what science is. Your faith-based belief in imaginary phenomena suggests you do not.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    (Falsely) calling it hypothetical indicates your claim of familiarity is erroneous.
    Your inability to even describe what you think "antimatter" is, let alone to provide reasons for your suspicion that it exists or your belief in it, is quite striking at this point.

    Quote Originally Posted by Dywyddyr View Post
    Is that because you won't look at the links?
    It's because you've offered nothing but some stories. You haven't even identified what it is you think "antimatter" really is, or why you should have any reason at all to suspect that it might exist. If you ever do that, then maybe you can start looking for evidence that it does exist. You have to abandon your initial assumption, which is that it must surely exist and reality be damned. Reality is not to be expected to conform to your fantasies.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    If I was going to lie I'd say I have a yard of dick, a bucket full of balls and enough hair on my ass to weave a persian rug. No, this is reality hitting you, and the reality is this "antimatter" is unproven conjecture based on mathematical abstraction and nothing else.
    Yes, you like to make claims and not support those claims and ignore the evidence provided by others. That is what lying is, by definition. So, you've shown that your many words lack validity and merit. No need to feed the troll, any longer.
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    Obvious troll is f*cking crazy obvious.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Neverfly View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    If I was going to lie I'd say I have a yard of dick, a bucket full of balls and enough hair on my ass to weave a persian rug. No, this is reality hitting you, and the reality is this "antimatter" is unproven conjecture based on mathematical abstraction and nothing else.
    Yes, you like to make claims and not support those claims and ignore the evidence provided by others. That is what lying is, by definition. So, you've shown that your many words lack validity and merit. No need to feed the troll, any longer.
    I see you still have nothing to offer to support your absurd beliefs but plenty of random speculation about me. No surprise, creationists do that kind of thing when they defend their faith-based beliefs, also.
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    The existence of the antiproton was experimentally confirmed in 1955 by University of California, Berkeley physicists Emilio Segrč and Owen Chamberlain, for which they were awarded the 1959 Nobel Prize in Physics.[20] An antiproton consists of two up antiquarks and one down antiquark (uud). The properties of the antiproton that have been measured all match the corresponding properties of the proton, with the exception of the antiproton having opposite electric charge and magnetic moment from the proton. Shortly afterwards, in 1956, the antineutron was discovered in proton–proton collisions at the Bevatron (Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory) by Bruce Cork and colleagues.[21]

    In addition to antibaryons, anti-nuclei consisting of multiple bound antiprotons and antineutrons have been created. These are typically produced at energies far too high to form antimatter atoms (with bound positrons in place of electrons). In 1965, a group of researchers led by Antonino Zichichi reported production of nuclei of antideuterium at the Proton Synchrotron at CERN.[22] At roughly the same time, observations of antideuterium nuclei were reported by a group of American physicists at the Alternating Gradient Synchrotron at Brookhaven National Laboratory.[23
    In 1995, CERN announced that it had successfully brought into existence nine antihydrogen atoms by implementing the SLAC/Fermilab concept during the PS210 experiment. The experiment was performed using the Low Energy Antiproton Ring (LEAR), and was led by Walter Oelert and Mario Macri[citation needed]. Fermilab soon confirmed the CERN findings by producing approximately 100 antihydrogen atoms at their facilities. The antihydrogen atoms created during PS210 and subsequent experiments (at both CERN and Fermilab) were extremely energetic ("hot") and were not well suited to study. To resolve this hurdle, and to gain a better understanding of antihydrogen, two collaborations were formed in the late 1990s, namely, ATHENA and ATRAP. In 2005, ATHENA disbanded and some of the former members (along with others) formed the ALPHA Collaboration, which is also based at CERN. The primary goal of these collaborations is the creation of less energetic ("cold") antihydrogen, better suited to study[citation needed].
    In 1999, CERN activated the Antiproton Decelerator, a device capable of decelerating antiprotons from 3.5 GeV to 5.3 MeV — still too "hot" to produce study-effective antihydrogen, but a huge leap forward. In late 2002 the ATHENA project announced that they had created the world's first "cold" antihydrogen.[24] The ATRAP project released similar results very shortly thereafter.[25] The antiprotons used in these experiments were cooled by decelerating them with the Antiproton Decelerator, passing them through a thin sheet of foil, and finally capturing them in a Penning-Malmberg trap.[26] The overall cooling process is workable, but highly inefficient; approximately 25 million antiprotons leave the Antiproton Decelerator and roughly 25,000 make it to the Penning-Malmberg trap, which is about 11000 or 0.1% of the original amount.

    A MATTER OF A FEW SECONDS RESEARCH AT WICKIPEDIA, THE TROLL IS ANSWERED
    Last edited by Sealeaf; February 24th, 2013 at 07:14 AM.
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  48. #47  
    Brassica oleracea Strange's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Plautus View Post
    I'm unconvinced by your bald assertions backed up by nothing more than consensus of opinions.
    Funnily enough, no one is convinced by your bald assertions backed up by nothing.
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  49. #48  
    A cyborg Werwolf xDARTHWOLFx's Avatar
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    Excuse me, this is NOT the place to troll, lie, and talk about D. I reported it. Don't do it EVAH again on my topic. Thank you.
    Don't argue with me. You will lose.
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  50. #49  
    Genius Duck Moderator Dywyddyr's Avatar
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    Wrong. It's a thread that you happen to have started, not "your topic".
    It's also a thread you haven't bothered to participate in since you managed to bring in zombies.
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  51. #50  
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    Quote Originally Posted by Sealeaf View Post
    The existence of the antiproton was experimentally confirmed in 1955 by University of California, Berkeley physicists Emilio Segrč and Owen Chamberlain, for which they were awarded the 1959 Nobel Prize in Physics.
    Antimatter itself was discovered much earlier. According to the book Antimatter by Frank Close, it was as early as 1923 when Dmitry Skobeltzyn, while performing an experiment on gamma rays in a cloud chamber in Leningrad, observed tracks made by what appeared to be electrons – except that the particles were positively charged. Neither he nor anyone else could explain the finding, which was a mystery at the time. It was in a paper published by Paul Dirac in 1928 that the existence of the positron – indeed any kind of antimatter – was postulated for the first time. And it was Carl David Anderson who discovered the positron in 1932, for which achievement he was awarded in the Nobel Prize in Physics in 1936.



    Quote Originally Posted by xDARTHWOLFx View Post
    You see, It was proven that antimatter exists, but what exactly is it? If it isn't matter then it can't exist... So how could scientists "prove" it exists? Matter is anything that has Mass, volume, takes up space, ETC. if something ISN'T matter, I can't exist...
    Antimatter IS matter, only not matter of the ordinary variety. If you want to know more about it, then I would recommend (besides the Internet) the book I mentioned above: Antimatter by Frank Close. The topics covered include military applications of antimatter – so I’m sure it will appeal in particular to zombie hunters.
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  52. #51  
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    Thanks for steering this discussion in a better direction Nehushtan. Instead of going back and forth when someone starts trolling about "belief system", we should just go back to scientific fundamentals. What has been observed exactly? What would be evidence sufficient to demonstrate the existence of anti-matter?


    When you are looking for electrons, and you find positively charged electrons instead of negatively charged ones, ...... that's pretty solid evidence that positively charged electrons must exist. Electrons are not hard to detect. TV sets use an electron gun to activate the pixels. That's household technology there. If our theory of how to detect an electron were wrong, it would be quite a surprise for the TV set to have been invented and work.

    All an anti-electron is is a positive electron. No other criteria is needed. If you find a positively charged electron then you have found anti-matter.

    If you pass a normal electron through a magnetic field in such a manner so that it's direction of travel is exactly perpendicular to the field, then, relative to whatever part of the field you designate as "up" and "down", the electron will veer off to the right. If it were a positive electron (or positron), it would veer off to the left. So, if you see an electron veering off to the left, you know you've found anti-matter. It's that simple.

    How then, can anyone reasonably doubt that positrons exist and have been detected?
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    Forum Freshman SciFi-Real's Avatar
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    What is the proportion of matter/antimatter and what would happen in a theoretical universe where the ratio is 1/1? What would happen when all particles collide with their counterparts and turn into energy (if this statement is still valid in science)?
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    Quote Originally Posted by SciFi-Real View Post
    What is the proportion of matter/antimatter
    I think it is effectively zero. There is antimatter out there but so little that it makes no difference.

    and what would happen in a theoretical universe where the ratio is 1/1? What would happen when all particles collide with their counterparts and turn into energy (if this statement is still valid in science)?
    It would, eventually, all annihilate and turn in radiation (photons).
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