What you need to know about antimatter

Antimatter refers to sub-atomic particles that have properties opposite normal sub-atomic particles. Antimatter is the opposite of normal matter. More specifically, the sub-atomic particles of antimatter have properties opposite those of normal matter.

What is antimatter used for?
PET (positron emission tomography) uses positrons to produce high-resolution images of the body. Positron-emitting radioactive isotopes (like the ones found in bananas) are attached to chemical substances such as glucose that are used naturally by the body.

Can antimatter be made?
When a particle collides with its antiparticle the two annihilate each other, with their mass being entirely converted into energy. … This process can be harnessed to produce antimatter artificially by, for example, colliding a stream of high-energy protons with a dense target in order to produce antiprotons.

How dangerous is antimatter?
Anti-matter, if you would touch it, would be extremely dangerous. … The energy released from a kilogram of antimatter could power all off humanity’s needs for a few years. But the actual danger to you from antimatter is zero, since there is no chance at all that you will encounter it.

Where is antimatter found?
The antiprotons were discovered in a particular region of the Van Allen belt called the South Atlantic Anomaly, where the inner ring of the belt dips closest to Earth’s surface.

What happens if you touch antimatter?
When antimatter and regular matter touch together, they destroy each other and release lots of energy in the form of radiation (usually gamma rays). If it’s a small amount, it’s totally safe. … If it’s a large amount, the gamma radiation would be enough to kill you or cause serious harm.

What does antimatter look like?
When you see antimatter depicted in science fiction movies, it’s usually some weird glowing gas in a special containment unit. Real antimatter looks just like regular matter. Anti-water, for example, would still be H2O and would have the same properties of water when reacting with other antimatter.

Where Does antimatter exist naturally?
If antimatter-dominated regions of space existed, the gamma rays produced in annihilation reactions along the boundary between matter and antimatter regions would be detectable. Antiparticles are created everywhere in the universe where high-energy particle collisions take place.

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