Physics and Chemistry


What is antimatter?

Antimatter is the exact opposite of normal matter. Antimatter was predicted in a series of equations derived by Paul Dirac (1902–1984). He was attempting to combine the theory of relativity with equations governing the behavior of electrons. In order to make his equations work, he had to predict the existence of a particle that would be similar to the electron, but opposite in charge. This particle, discovered in 1932, was the antimatter equivalent of the electron and called the positron (electrons with a positive charge). Other antimatter particles would not be discovered until 1955 when particle accelerators were finally able to confirm the existence of the antineutron and antiproton (protons with a negative charge). Antiatoms (pairings of positrons and antiprotons) are other examples of antimatter.


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