Matter and anti-matter



Symmetry (Batavia, Ill., Feb. 28) – Today it’s well-known that matter and antimatter are the ultimate wonder twins. They’re spontaneously born from raw energy as a team of two and vanish in a silent poof of energy when they merge and annihilate. This appearing-disappearing act spawned one of the most fundamental mysteries in the universe: What is engraved in the laws of nature that saved us from the broth of appearing and annihilating particles of matter and antimatter when the universe was formed? “We know this cosmic asymmetry must exist because here we are,” says Jessie Shelton, a professor of physics at Illinois. “It’s a puzzling imbalance because theory requires three conditions – which all have to be true at once – to create this cosmic preference for matter.”