Scientists have figured out how to create antimatter in the laboratory

As the researchers report in the journal Nature, the new technology involves the use of two lasers, whose

rays collide in space. Thus, scientists create conditions similar to those that occur near neutron stars. Thus, scientists manage to convert light into matter and antimatter.

As you know, antimatter is matter consisting ofantiparticles - "mirror reflections" of a number of elementary particles that have the same spin and mass, but differ from each other in signs of all other interaction characteristics: electric and color charges, baryon and lepton quantum numbers. Some particles, for example a photon, do not have antiparticles or, which is the same thing, are antiparticles in relation to themselves.

The problem is that the instability of antimatterinterferes with answering many questions about its nature and properties. In addition, the corresponding particles usually appear in extreme conditions - as a result of a lightning strike, near neutron stars, black holes, or in laboratories of large size and power, such as the Large Hadron Collider.

Until the new method got experimentalconfirmation. However, virtual simulation suggests that the method will work even in a relatively small laboratory. The new equipment envisages the use of two powerful lasers and a plastic block pierced with tunnels several micrometers in diameter. As soon as the lasers hit the target, they accelerate the electron clouds of the block and they rush towards each other.

The simulated images show howthe density of the plasma (black and white) changes when powerful lasers hit it from both sides. The colors represent the different energies of the gamma rays generated by the collision.

Toma Tonchyan

A collision like this produces a lot of gamma rays,and because of the extremely narrow channels, photons are more likely to collide with each other as well. This, in turn, causes flows of matter and antimatter, in particular electrons and their equivalent of antimatter, positrons. Finally, directed magnetic fields focus the positrons into the beam and accelerate it, imparting incredibly high energy.

Researchers say the new technologyvery effective. The authors are confident that it is potentially capable of creating 100 thousand times more antimatter than it would be possible with a single laser. In addition, the laser power can be relatively low. In this case, the energy of the rays of antimatter will be the same as in the conditions of the Earth is achieved only in large particle accelerators.

The authors of the work argue that the technologies that allow it to be implemented already exist at some facilities.

Research published in the journal Communications Physics.

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