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Q & A: Where's the antimatter?

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Most recent answer: 01/06/2016
Q:
Three questions.1. I have read that there should be more anti-matter in the universe than is observed, and that people can't come up with an explanation for where it is despite best efforts. What portion of theoretically predicted anti-matter is accounted for? 2. I also read that anti-matter and matter produce gravitational fields in the same way. Could a black hole be made of anti-matter? 3. What percentage of the universe is made up of black holes?
- Reid Johnson (age 30)
Kodiak, Alaska, USA
A:

3. It's true that there's no good explanation of how it happened that there is so much more matter than antimatter. We're quite sure, however, that the antimatter is not lurking out there somewhere. So the challenge is to try to understand how the matter-antimatter imbalance arose. It's one of several reminders that the physics we know may just be a small island in a sea of unknowns.

2. Black holes are neither matter nor antimatter. Their only properties are mass, angular momentum, and charge.

1. Apparently the mass of the black holes in the observable universe is only about 1/100,000 of the total mass.

Mike W.

The matter-antimatter asymmetry in the universe is one of the most puzzling questions of modern physics.   A Russian physicist Andrei Sakharov  developed necessary requirements for this asymmetry to occur but so far the exact mechanism is still not understood.  See https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Baryogenesis  for more information.    LeeH


(published on 01/06/2016)

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