Thursday, April 14, 2011

Antimatter and Dark Energy

Every once in a great while, I get hit with a really big realization, and I wonder why I never thought of it before. For example, just the other day I was suddenly struck with the insight that all the attacks against Chris Abele having paid no taxes were actually an indictment of Republican tax policy. After all, it's been the Republicans who have consistently given the richest 1% all the tax breaks they can muster. So should they at all be surprised that somewhere out there, as a direct result, there would exist a rich philanthropist who exploits every charitable loophole they themselves provided to pay no taxes? Strange, really. Those on the right-wing never seemed to have a problem with that, until such a wealthy individual decided to represent the left and run for County Executive of Milwaukee. I'm kicking myself for not realizing this obvious fact, and doubly kicking myself for not thinking of it before election day came.

But this most recent thought dwarfs the one about Abele. And, fortunately, it's not about politics for once.

There was a recent story I posted to my Facebook page about CERN, and about how the Large Hadron Collider may have discovered a new sort of anti-particle. Almost simultaneously, Fermilab, the older, smaller particle accelerator located outside of Chicago, announced that it may have made a breakthrough discovery. And these might give new insights into antimatter and how it works.

Strange thing about antimatter, though. There's so little of it. Or is there?

Thinking about the structure of the atom, I've often mulled over how atoms give off light if those atoms are put into an excited state with energy. So, if an electron "orbiting" a nucleus is charged with energy, it will move into a higher orbital. Then, when it returns to its lower orbital again, it will emit a photon of light. Different sizes of orbital shifts make different colors along the spectrum, including ultraviolet, gamma rays, radio waves, infrared, and so forth.

But that's matter. What if antimatter had it's positrons put into an excited state while orbiting a nucleus comprised of antiparticles? Would we then get a photon of "anti-light?"

It's an intriguing thought. Find some excited antimatter, and if you were wearing antimatter-seeing glasses, you could see an entire star which wasn't there before! Or maybe an entire galaxy full of them?

And this gives an interesting possibility as to the riddle of "dark matter." It's not really dark, perhaps. It just might be that dark matter is dark to our eyes because we have eyes of matter and the dark-matter is emitting anti-light which we can't see or yet detect. So if CERN finds a way to "see" in anti-light, wouldn't it be something if we suddenly found a whole shitload of galaxies that weren't there!

And black holes? Black holes happen when enough matter collapses in upon itself so that the very atoms collapse. But however small, however dense that black hole may be, at it's core is still what is essentially matter. So if you have a black hole, you could, in effect, have an "anti-black-hole!"

What happens when a black hole collides with an anti-black-hole? A quasar, perhaps?

This still doesn't solve the riddle of "dark energy," which seems to be making the universe's expansion accelerate. But just in case some dude comes up with this idea later, I wanted to throw up the idea first on this blog, just to gain primacy. Who knows? I may be right!

Then again, maybe I'm just brilliantly wrong.

On second thought, it doesn't look quite so brilliant to me. Maybe that's because it's shining in anti-light.

Eric

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