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Brookhaven Scientists Create The Origins Of The Universe?

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posted on Mar, 25 2010 @ 12:43 AM
Using the Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider, scientists at the Brookhaven National Laboratory routinely create conditions similar to those at the origins of our universe, 14 billions years ago. When doing so, the existence of matter and anti-matter is about equal, which is very different from now, when anti-matter largely seems to be absent or unobservable.

This disparity between the ratio of matter and anti-matter at the beginning of the universe versus now is one of the chief problems facing physics today.

Collisions at RHIC fleetingly produce conditions that existed a few microseconds after the Big Bang, which scientists believe gave birth to the universe as we know it some 13.7 billion years ago. In both nucleus-nucleus collisions at RHIC and in the Big Bang, quarks and antiquarks emerge with equal abundance. At RHIC, among the collision fragments that survive to the final state, matter and antimatter are still close to equally abundant, even in the case of the relatively complex antinucleus and its normal-matter partner featured in the present study. In contrast, antimatter appears to be largely absent from the present-day universe.

“Understanding precisely how and why there’s a predominance of matter over antimatter remains a major unsolved problem of physics,” said Brookhaven physicist Zhangbu Xu, another one of the lead authors. “A solution will require measurements of subtle deviations from perfect symmetry between matter and antimatter, and there are good prospects for future antimatter measurements at RHIC to address this key issue.”

Colliding gold ions, scientists created an antinucleus, a state of anti-matter which contained (among an antiproton, antineutron and anti-Lambda particle) an anti-strange quark. ("Anti" just means it's anti-matter versus matter.) Anti-strange quarks were only theoretical before. So say the scientists, this revolutionary discovery is a blockbuster breakthrough in understanding fundamental mysteries of the universe.

Explorations of these exotic states of matter will create pathways for understanding how the conditions were created that brought forth our world.

Exotic Antimatter Detected at Relativistic Heavy Ion Collider (RHIC)

posted on Mar, 25 2010 @ 01:24 AM
why did they use gold ions? could they have done the same experiments with ions of a different element?

posted on Mar, 25 2010 @ 01:30 AM
Huh, no wonder gold is so important.

hrmmm raises many questions.

posted on Mar, 25 2010 @ 03:49 AM

Originally posted by bulletproof_monk
why did they use gold ions? could they have done the same experiments with ions of a different element?

Previously, scientists used paper-thin layers of alternate substances, but based on simulated experimentation, they have used millimeter-thick layers of gold (as the catalyst) which has proved to emit much more positrons (or anti-electrons; i.e., the electrons of anti-matter). The gold ("bombarded" by the forced electrons) and the electrons issue pure energy (gamma rays), which upon breakdown, derives into much more matter and anti-matter (than had been typical) and therefore allows better observation. This would happen without the gold, but the gold speeds it up enormously.

The electrons are shot at the gold nuclei at 200 gigaelectronvolts, about the energy force present at the Big Bang.

Lawrence Livermore has also established the use of gold to create a larger amount of material that decays into matter/anti-matter.

This ability to produce massive amounts of positrons has wide-ranging implications, including focused energy (gamma rays) of amazing power that could, theoretically be used as weaponry and/or focused annihilation or even for medical purposes.

As to why gold works as a better catalyst and contributes to the creation of more positrons than had been typical, frankly, I do not know.

posted on Mar, 25 2010 @ 05:25 AM
Well thats interesting. I wonder if thats why gold has been a precious metal for so long... Maybe using a different metal can create conditions that are more similar to our universe? Just a thought

posted on Mar, 25 2010 @ 07:53 AM
This is pretty amazing stuff considering all this is happening in my backyard. I live like 10 miles from Brookhaven Lab.I thought that CERN would beat them to it?? interesting none the less,good post.

posted on Mar, 26 2010 @ 08:56 AM
Here's another piece on this event:

For One Tiny Instant, Physicists May Have Broken a Law of Nature

For a brief instant, it appears, scientists at Brook haven National Laboratory on Long Island recently discovered a law of nature had been broken.

Most of this, who am I kidding, ALL of this stuff flies over my head

But, if you get the chance it looks like quite the heated battle is going on by observing the comments below the linked article..

Interesting times we live in. Good find OP

posted on Mar, 26 2010 @ 12:49 PM
Regarding the issue of why they use gold ions as the catalyst versus another material, I e-mailed Dr. Chen, one of the authors of the paper that is the origin of this article. Here is his response:

We collide gold nuclei together in our experiments because we need to use
the biggest and most spherical nuclei possible. There are nuclei like
uranium that are somewhat bigger than gold, but those nuclei are not
spherical like gold. So gold is the best compromise. Similar experiments
at CERN in Europe use lead nuclei, which are very close to the same size
as gold, and are also spherical.


Apparently gold has the largest nuclei of anything, without sacrificing the required spherical shape.

posted on Mar, 26 2010 @ 01:06 PM

Originally posted by JacKatMtn
Here's another piece on this event:

For One Tiny Instant, Physicists May Have Broken a Law of Nature

But, if you get the chance it looks like quite the heated battle is going on by observing the comments below the linked article.

I concur, JacK. That article is interesting, but the comments even more interesting. The debates, for others' information, ranges from the typical hysteria over spawning mini-black holes to the course of action when known laws have been revealed to be broken to suggesting a Nobel is in these scientists' future. Thanks for the link.

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