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Could Negative Mass Exist?

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posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 09:19 PM
So, I was thinking about space and time, like I am oft to do, and I was considering how matter falls "down" because mass warps space-time in a "downward" path.

That is to say, if you had a sheet of paper, mass forms little whirlpool-like eddies in the paper that sink down three-dimensionally.

Now, I have thought before about how a hypothetical tpye of matter could, instead of pushing "down" on space-time, push it up. Such matter would repel other matter away from it.

The real question that came to me, though, was what kind of matter would be necessary to do this?

Although some super-exotic matter might be capable of making a force that would APPEAR to do this, the only matter I could think of would be something with NEGATIVE Mass. Thus, the answer to the age old riddle of "What Can You Put Into A Bucket To Make It Lighter?" is not just "A Hole", but could also be "Negative Mass".


Put Negative Mass around normal matter, and their space-time warpages would cancel each other out, thus making the object lighter. In the end, one of the two push/pulls would eventually win out, but negative mass could do some other funny stuff.

I decided to research the topic, and I was surprised to find something at Wikipedia ( This article goes into some actual math, and presented some oddities of negative mass.

For one, it could go faster than light, and doing so would produce energy, or require "negative" energy. As it approaches 0 speed, it begins to require infinite negative energy, or produce infinite energy. Since matter always looks for a stable energy amount, negative mass would not only have to go faster than light, but would actually go at infinite speed. It would be everywhere in the universe, all at the same time.

Do the equation: E = mc^2/[(1-v^2/c^2)^1/2]

Put a negative amount of mass in for "m", and look at the oddities that happen.

So, I wonder, could negative mass exist?

Think about this.

Negative Mass, looking for the lowest energy level, would be at infinite speed. Being at infinite speed, it is everywhere at the same time. If it is everywhere, then around areas of high regular mass, it would have little effect (especially if there was a very tiny amount of negative matter). However, in areas where there is a lot of nothing (where there is a vacuum), then perhaps negative mass could have visible effects.

Could Negative Mass be the Culprit of Dark Energy?

posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 09:38 PM
Okay, so lets say this Negative Matter actually exists... what would it be composed of? Would such an element have Tachyons instead of Electrons as it's orbitals? The reason why I say this is something you said sounded a lot like how Tachyons behave in the equations.

Could Negative Mass be the Culprit of Dark Energy?

Maybe not Dark Energy, perhaps its the culprit of the matter that generates Dark Energy(Is that Dark Matter? I was never entirely clear on that as I believe there is some disagreement in this area).

[edit on 3-7-2006 by sardion2000]

posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 11:21 PM
Does negative mass and normal mass annihilate each other like matter and antimatter? If yes, then if negative mass was travelling at infinite speed and is everywhere at the same time, will it not affect all normal mass by nullifying it?

I know matter and antimatter are 'things' while mass is a 'property', but can they not be treated in the regards?

Maybe it is the negative mass that is causing the accelerated expansion of the universe. Its like a big hill that the universe sits on and the further things are apart from each other, the faster the fall away (like an anti black-hole)?

posted on Jul, 3 2006 @ 11:40 PM
"Does negative mass and normal mass annihilate each other like matter and antimatter?"

To answer the question negative matter is anti-matter. No such negative matter exists anti-matter is the opposite of matter.

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 12:33 AM

Originally posted by The_Doctor
Negative matter is anti-matter. No such negative matter exists anti-matter is the opposite of matter.

Mass is not matter. It is a property of matter.

Mass and charge are different physical properties of matter.

Antimatter has mass just as normal matter does, but has opposite charge (ie an antiproton has negative charge and an anti-electron, a positron, has, well... the name says it all. Antimatter and negative mass are two very different things.

Intuition suggests that negative mass cannot exist; it's one thing to assign a minus sign to a value in an equation, quite another to imagine an object with negative mass in the real world. Still, intuition is an unhandy guide to the secrets of the physical world, so perhaps such a thing could exist after all.

Any mathematicians or physicists around the place who could help us with this?

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 07:41 AM
Yes, Astyanax is correct, anti-matter is not negative matter, because anti-matter does possess mass, whilst negative matter would have to be made of anti-mass.

Now, I don't yet think that negative matter exists, but it is a good question for whether matter and neg-matter would annihilate each other.

On the one hand, I would say no. The very properties of neg-matter make it not want to be close to matter, the two should never interact, or they would interact, but only at the highest energies.

When they interact, it's POSSIBLE perhaps that the two could exist in the same point of space at the same time, but they might just pass through each other and then everything would be the same.

And yes, this does sound a lot like Tachyons. Perhaps Tachyons are neg-matter, which may be why we have such a hard time detecting them.

Would Dark Matter create Tachyons or neg-matter? Perhaps some Dark Matter might, but not all of it. Remember, Dark Matter and Dark Energy are names for things we don't know are there. There could be many more multiple parts to Dark Matter than what we know.

I think it's more likely that these Tachyons are only produced at extremely high energies - ones that stretch normal physics. Such events could be supernova, the creation of the universe, and the event horizon of black holes.

Take "virtual particles" for instance - better known as Hawking Radiation. Essentially, two virtual particles come into existance around the black hole's event horizon. Normally the two annihilate each other instantly (since one is matter, the other anti-matter), however, the incredible gravitational pull of the black hole sucks in the anti-matter particle before the two can collide. The matter particle is sent speeding away from the black hole at nearly the speed of light, whilst the anti-matter particle zaps away some of the mass of the Black Hole. These events are caused by "quantum fluctuations".

However, perhaps such fluctuations permit the existance of a tachyon in the normal universe for but a brief moment of time, which then has an even tinier chance of interacting with something else. As we've seen, the tachyon emits absolutely massive amounts of energy when going below the speed of light. Are some of the things that we're observing in the universe being mistakenly identified as something else? Gamma-Bursts perhaps? X-ray bursts?

I don't know, but the possibility looks like it's there.

[edit: sorry for mispelling your name Astyanax!]

[edit on 4-7-2006 by Yarium]

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 09:50 AM
IF it was my goal to have a mass of x and I started off at y, and I instead achieved z, then if z

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 12:16 PM
For something to float upwards is in direct conflict with the theory of relativity...

Einsteins elevator thought experiment was an example of gravity. It is a constant force even in zero G the force of the elevator moving upwards keeps you on the floor. If negative mass existed it would not float up it would behave like anything else would. Thus negative matter would hit the floor of the elevator and stay there because it's constant. Now gravity is not a force it is acceleration not a force for example on the moon a feather and a hammer fall at the same rate. All matter has mass even anti-matter, now anti matter is negative matter since it is composed of negative particles yet it does not have a negative mass.

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 12:55 PM

Originally posted by The_Doctor
For something to float upwards is in direct conflict with the theory of relativity...

I take it you're not a doctor of physics!

Einsteins elevator thought experiment was an example of gravity. It is a constant force even in zero G...

Looks like you've been visiting this page, which is about the fourth that comes up when you google "negative mass". You know, Doc, I wouldn't recommend the physics on that page to anyone. It's a little... shall we say eccentric?

Did you check out the pages that appear before that one? Interestingly, Yarium, they offer utterly incompatible yet equally plausible predictions on the existence (yes, no, maybe) and behaviour (attracts, repels, both attracts and repels) of negative mass.

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 12:55 PM

For something to float upwards is in direct conflict with the theory of relativity...

So? The theory isn't sacrosanct you know. It will be replaced with a unified theory eventually and there is no harm in speculating about some of the hidden parts(to us) of that future theory. Instead of saying can't do, not possible, etc, you could you know...try to think outside of the box...
So instead of debating semantics, open up the floodgates of creativity.

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 12:58 PM

Originally posted by etothex
IF it was my goal to have a mass of x and I started off at y, and I instead achieved z, then if z

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 01:07 PM
lol That happens from time to time. Never hear the story about it though as it may cause additional "Drama." heh.

This is the definition of Negative Matter I got through define:negative matter on Google.

"Exotic matter is a hypothetical concept of particle physics. It covers any material which violates one or more classical conditions or is not made of known baryonic particles. Such materials would possess qualities like negative mass or being repelled rather than attracted by gravity. It is used in certain speculative theories, such as on the construction of wormholes. The closest known real representative of exotic matter is a region of negative pressure density produced by the Casimir effect."

Not sure if this was posted already but it's a good explanation of this speculative phenomenon.

And yes, this does sound a lot like Tachyons. Perhaps Tachyons are neg-matter, which may be why we have such a hard time detecting them.

Well a Tachyon wouldn't be the entirety of a Negative Element, as they are Sub-Atomic Particals. Perhaps Anti-Matter does have a role to fill in Negative Matter too? Is there analogous anti-particles for protons and neutrons?

[edit on 4-7-2006 by sardion2000]

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 01:27 PM
I was intrigued by this subject and I looked to see what research has been done on antiproton and antineutron particles. This site has listed a few other sites for more indepth research.

As far as my knowledge on physics, I really couldn't even tell you the forces that keep us from flying off the earth into outerspace. I know gravity is one, but there are others too I believe. I'll sit back and watch you guys crunch the numbers on this. LOL

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 04:10 PM
Actually, no, the only site I visited on this speculation for neg-matter was the Wiki-site, and that was only after the conception of such a kind of matter.

Oh, I didn't mean to say that neg-matter was made of tachyons, but that tachyons could be part of what we term "neg-matter".

Now, I remember hearing things from other people on the subject of tachyons, such as that - going faster than light - they may also travel backwards through time, rather than forwards. If the tachyon can be seen as a fundamental particle of neg-matter (in the same regards as electrons), then in essence neg-matter could be travelling backwards in time as well.

I don't want to dip into reverse time-travel though, as it means something's happening in the future to affect the past. If time itself were reversed, then that's fine, but from our perspective you can't change the past, and so such a concept is mind-bending in order to comprehend or solve.

In any case, I'm glad to hear that neg-matter is something that other people have thought of.

Oh, and Doc, you're not entirely right, but not entirely wrong
. Neg-matter is, yes, still affected by gravity. If neg-matter doesn't travel faster than light, then a piece of neg-matter in an elevator, so long as the neg-matter is less "massive" than the mass beneath it, would still sit at the bottom of the elevator.

However, as the neg-matter has a "neg-mass" approaching that of the mass beneath it, then it would start doing really funny things. First, even before we really notice anything different, the neg-matter would be lighter than it should be, even if the substance itself were very dense (funnily enough, the denser the neg-matter would be, the LIGHTER it would become! I just thought of that - how odd). Then, as it truelly approaches it, the neg-matter would start to fly. This wouldn't be because it is repelling the regular matter (which it is - just not to a high enough degree yet), but because it's become lighter than the air around it. Even if it floats to the top of the elevator, it still wouldn't affect the elevator itself.

However, that would change once the neg-mass exceeds the reg-mass. It would start pushing away, and would start carrying the elevator along with it.

Now, an important thing to consider here is that Gravity ISN'T a push or a pull. It's a space-time warp. We fall because, in our paper-sheet conception, the paper slopes inwards, and then gravity draws it down. Really, even though it slopes inwards, it's the path that the object is taking that is changed, it's not actually being pulled down. The same with the neg-mass, which has a slope that would bulge out from the paper. It's not pushing things away from it, it's just changing the path that something is taking and the path leads away from it.

Summarization: The rules of general relativity, and the consequences of exotic types of matter, are really wierd.

Summary of the Summary: The universe is wierd.

posted on Jul, 4 2006 @ 04:45 PM
What is so "Illuding" about the possible existance of the "actual" possession of an "Anti-matter Particle" is that with technology , even as advanced as we think we are with it, tend's to be based on the principles of "Action/ reaction" theories. There is no known way to achieve an exact truth of the physical existance with out some form of measurement's for it's praticality of use or applications.
Truthwillsetyoufree is on the leading edge of the explanation's needed to acquire and present the actual existance of such a subatomic particle, you have to start from the begining and go from there.
Here is a web page that goes into grest detail of how it is so difficult to measure the existance of something that is molecularly small. This is all the basis of how to initiate "Complementary Uncertainty Principles" as a tactical and theoretical thesis to this matter at hand.
Very interesting thread Yarium, but very difficult to discuss with all the outcomes that are feasably probable and if it leads to the practical evidence's that are needed toprovide the whole truth's of the existance of "Antimatter/neg-matter. lectures/lec14.html

One more strictly food for thought Yarium:

[edit on 4-7-2006 by Allred5923]

posted on Jul, 6 2006 @ 10:18 PM
Some quantum physicists believe that in inflationary cosmology ( big bang w/ inflation) occurred because if matter in the right state of super density, pre big bang, can actually act negatively with gravity. Instead of things coming together in this super dense state gravity was actually repulsive to matter. This is what allowed the universe to expand by a factor of 1x10 ^50 in 1x10 ^-30 seconds, well at least some say. But it has yet to be confirmed. I know this isn't exactly what you were asking about negative matter but if there can be negative grav who knows?

We are going to find out a whole lot more about the universe in the coming years with CERN coming online in 2007. Currently quantum mechanics and Einstein's relativity are at odds in things like black holes and big bang type scenarios. Quantum mechanics is good for things that are extremely small and Einstein's stuff works well for super fast / heavy things, but the two clash in super small/massive things like black holes.

posted on Jul, 6 2006 @ 10:23 PM

We are going to find out a whole lot more about the universe in the coming years with CERN coming online in 2007.

Don't forget the next space based telescopes! Looking back farther and farther into time can add clues to the whole Dark Energy mystery.

posted on Jul, 7 2006 @ 10:03 AM
Negative mass??????

Yeah, its called a hole.

posted on Jul, 12 2006 @ 09:03 PM
According to a 2004 article in Scientific American (, both negative energy and negative mass are speculated to exist. Refered to as exotic matter (a term which is used elsewhere to describe various theoretical states and particles), negative mass differs from antimatter.

I wish I could tell you more, but most of the article went over my head.

posted on Jul, 12 2006 @ 10:10 PM

Originally posted by cyraxx
Negative mass??????

Yeah, its called a hole.

Haha nice joke. You were joking yeah?
A hole is not negative mass, it is zero mass.

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