Antimatter discredits Big Bang

Cloud chamber photo of a positron, the first-discovered antimatter particle
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Antimatter isn’t as common as it should be, by the Big Bang theory. Some scientists hope to find out why. But any creation advocate knows why.

What is antimatter?

Antimatter is like normal matter, but backwards. Its electrons are positive, its protons are negative, and all its magnetic moments are in reverse. When two identical particles of matter and antimatter meet, they destroy each other and release a lot of energy as gamma rays.

Direct comparison of matter to antimatter

Direct comparison of matter to antimatter, to show that matter and antimatter are like mirrors. Graphic: National Science Foundation

Antimatter forms from gamma rays, too. But such an event should form matter and antimatter in the same amounts. The Big Bang theory states that a tremendous explosion created all the matter in the universe. But it should have created as much antimatter as matter.

So where is all the antimatter? Where are the antimatter planets, stars, systems, and galaxies? Michael Oard reviewed the papers that relate to this problem in 1998. They all say the same thing: no one can find the antimatter.

That is a serious problem for the Big Bang theory. In fact, since the first nuclear physicists discovered antimatter, speculators looked forward to finding all this antimatter and using it as an almost limitless fuel, for power and especially for transport. Now that dream is gone—but more than that, the Big Bang theory is in trouble. If that theory has any truth to it at all, then the universe must once have had as much antimatter as matter—and doesn’t any longer.

Where could the antimatter have gone?

Actually, it’s as well that all that antimatter doesn’t exist. If it did, the universe might have destroyed itself in a flash brighter than the Big Bang was, and we would not be here to argue about it. But matter doesn’t just disappear. If it once existed, it had to go somewhere.

One possible clue might be if matter and antimatter are not the mirror images of one another that everyone thought. The technical term for this is charge-parity-time-reversal symmetry, or CPT symmetry. Parity is the “handedness” of the universe—and in fact, the universe is more right-handed than left-handed. The obvious question is: why does matter have a privilege over antimatter? That alone violates the CPT symmetry principle.

CERN believes that it can find the answer only by assembling enough antimatter to test it for CPT symmetry. That has been impossible—until now.

How to harvest antimatter

Capturing antimatter particles is easy—they form all the time in many of the experiments that CERN runs every day. But confining antimatter is another matter. The only way to confine antimatter is in a magnetic bottle. The trick is to trap anti-protons (negative charge) and anti-electrons (positive charge, also called positrons) long enough for them to combine, to form anti-hydrogen.

Until recently, CERN’s scientists could not do that for more than seconds at a time. But recently they reported in Nature Physics that they could form and trap anti-hydrogen for as long as seventeen minutes.

What can they do with it?

If the experimenters can handle anti-hydrogen that long, then they can compare it to normal hydrogen, to see whether it obeys CPT symmetry, or has a right-hand thread, or a left-hand thread. If it breaks CPT symmetry, the scientists already say that they will revisit all their theories about where the universe came from. Jeffrey Hangst, a professor at Aarhus University in Denmark, put it this way:

Any hint of CPT symmetry breaking would require a serious rethink of our understanding of nature. But half of the universe has gone missing, so some kind of rethink is apparently on the agenda.

At least Prof. Hangst is honest, as far as he goes. He admits that the antimatter is missing. But he won’t admit that the antimatter never existed. That’s the problem.

The real answer

The Bible tells us the real answer: the universe did not form by itself. God formed it, and He preferred matter to antimatter. The CERN scientists aren’t ready to admit that yet, and might never be. But they already know that the Big Bang theory doesn’t fit if the antimatter is missing. If they try to save the theory, they’ll only make it more complicated than it has already become, to explain a dozen other inconsistencies.

Featured image: a cloud-chamber photograph of the first-ever positron. Photo: National Science Foundation.

Editor-in-chief at | + posts

Terry A. Hurlbut has been a student of politics, philosophy, and science for more than 35 years. He is a graduate of Yale College and has served as a physician-level laboratory administrator in a 250-bed community hospital. He also is a serious student of the Bible, is conversant in its two primary original languages, and has followed the creation-science movement closely since 1993.

26 Responses to Antimatter discredits Big Bang

  1. Horace says:

    You say your featured image is cloud-chamber photograph of the first-ever positron. That seems unlikely.

    Do you mean first-ever cloud-chamber photograph of a positron?

  2. Geno says:

    Regardless if the Big Bang is true or not, does nothing at all to solve the distant starlight problem of Genesis literalism.

    In other words, I can go out in my back yard at night and see (with my unaided eyes) the galaxy Andromeda which is 2.4 million light years from Earth. I should not be able to see that galaxy in a universe only 6,000 years old….. and in cosmological terms, Andromeda is right next door.

    • Matti says:

      Here is a good link to start understanding the distant starlight problem,

    • Steve says:

      That’s not really a ‘problem’… If God created all the living things on Earth in an already matured state, it makes sense that He would create the galaxies at an already matured state. That means the Sun would have to have been made at an already matured state, since it is not a small, newly formed star. If it was it would not be capable of supporting life as it is currently on Earth. I mean, say for Example you were God. Would you create living things as young, and incapable of sustaining themselves, or at a matured state where they can keep themselves alive? Would you create a new star to warm the planet actually too small to do so? No. So how is it not logical to believe that God would create the rest of the universe in a matured state, with the light from the other galaxies already here, despite how far away they are? Since it takes several minutes for sunlight to reach the Earth, if there were life on here it would have died instantly because it would have been far too cold for any kind life as we know it to survive such a cold for several minutes. That means God would have HAD to make the sunlight already here. And there’s no reason to believe that God wouldn’t just make the light from the neighboring galaxies here at the beginning of the universe. Unless you don’t believe in God at all, which is what the (now failing) Big Bang theory is for.

      And of course it’s also been proven that the speed of light is a variable that changes with time and space. So your argument doesn’t work either way.

  3. John says:

    So what’s your saying is…

    Big Bang theory has problems = Biblical literalism is the only answer?

    That’s quite the illogical jump.

    • Steve says:

      It’s not illogical if Biblical literalism actually IS the only answer. Which it is at this point. If you’d like to try and come up with a solid alternative to the failing Big Bang theory, I’d be glad to hear it.

  4. […] The Bible tells us the real answer: the universe did not form by itself. God formed it, and He preferred matter to antimatter. The CERN scientists aren’t ready to admit that yet, and might never be. But they already know that the Big Bang theory doesn’t fit if the antimatter is missing. If they try to save the theory, they’ll only make it more complicated than it has already become, to explain a dozen other inconsistencies. […]

  5. Rob says:

    How about ‘I don’t know’? Is it so difficult to admit that one may not know an answer to a question? The position that ‘I don’t believe the science so I’ll believe something else [an interpretation of the bible] because it would be terrible for me to admit that I don’t understand something’ is clearly ludicrous. Even more so when it is based on a presupposition rather than a balanced evaluation of knowledge (which is necessary if you actually want to understand something).

    In fact this is just a facade – you are not looking at the question and then deciding that scientific evidence is inferior to biblical evidence, you are not addressing the question at all but turning to what you want to believe, independent on its factual value and dismissing the science out of hand and pretending that there is only one alternative.

    Is New York in Australia? I don’t believe that it is so it must be in Wales (because I read this in a book that I really believe). LOOK AT THE EVIDENCE!!!!

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      I am looking at the evidence. And the evidence for the Big Bang turns out to be a prize collection of fudge factors. The big fudge of them all is “dark matter,” an alleged source of gravity that we can’t even see. The latest fudge factor is of the opposite kind: “dark energy,” or anti-gravity.

      That would be unacceptable in any engineering classroom. A good professor would laugh harder at this sort of thing than a patent examiner would laugh at the plans for a perpetual-motion machine.

      The evidence, such as there is, is that we’re supposed to have as much antimatter abroad in the universe as normal matter. All right, then! Where is it? The only antimatter that anyone has ever seen, is in nuclear-physics laboratories. And a good thing, too. If you could go out into space and fetch in a quantity of antimatter—well, I shudder to think of the implications. One purple-faced Persian who would love to get his hands on it, springs immediately to mind.

      So where did the antimatter go? Where could it have gone? Face it: it never existed. There are rules to this universe, rules that uniformitarians spend a lifetime trying to deny. But these rules are stubborn things.

      • Cameron says:

        What does it matter if it’s understood by engineers or not? Engineers are not responsible for any of the experimentation, or development of any theories. This is the realm of physicists, both theoretical and experimental, and no engineering professor would laugh at this higher level of physics, simply because it’s beyond his field.

      • Big Al says:

        So What you are saying Terry is that a story written in a book a couple thousand years ago or so is concrete evidence. So what your saying saying is that the Book of Genesis is fact and not just a story written by the elders to answer the questions of the first generations of Hebrews so they would be obedient.

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          What you call “a story” is actually an Historical Record. One can reasonably infer that this Record is True and Correct because it has the best quality-control for copy fidelity of all the world’s literature, and it has reliably predicted future events.

          And yes, Genesis is a True and Accurate Record. True science—as opposed to the deliberate fudging that has taken its place regarding origins questions—has vindicated this Record.

  6. Durwood Foote says:

    Professing themselves to be wise, they became as fools. The Book of Romans, chapter 1, verse 22.

  7. Aaron Petrick says:

    Rob: Why try to understand the beauty of natural science, when it is much, much, much more simple to just say “goddidit”?

    You don’t need hypothesis, proof, a method, credibility… just your word. God did it.

    Oh, and don’t worry if someone finds flaws in the ol’ god did it fact. You can roundly reject any relevant, rational argument, simply by lacing it in with “gods plan”.

    You know, I’m starting to understand the allure of fundie christianity…You dont’ have to really do anything, except pray, and believe in some guy who was nailed to a cross… or something, oh, and irritate friends, family, and strangers with their moonspeak. You have no accountability with the lies you spread, and the best part…. You get to ride on that morally righteous religious horse all the way to heaven!

  8. In A Flash Of Gamma-Rays A Star Is Gone…

    Copyright © 2011 National Public Radio®. For personal, noncommercial use only. See Terms of Use. For other uses, prior permission required. IRA FLATOW, host: This is SCIENCE FRIDAY, I’m Ira Flatow. Astronomers state they may be se……

  9. Aziza says:

    @Aaron: My point exactly. Christianity, from my perspective is only a security blanket. The only reason it exists is because people are, as one already said, too stubborn to admit that they can’t know all the secrets of the universe and therefor someone decided to say that some sort of all knowing being manifested himself (notice how rediculous that actually sounds) and created everything we know and don’t know. I’m not an athiest, but I DO believe that the idea of christianity is absolutely ludicris and not only that but it’s also discriminatory and has been pretty much shoved down the throats of society. I believe that any religion shouldn’t even be mentioned on such a site in the first place, simply because it causes so many arguements. And ESPECIALLY not christianity because it actually conflicts with a ton of other religions.

    • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

      Well, that’s your opinion. I base my own opinion on a harder look at the facts than you seem to appreciate. The facts say that the very existence of the universe, this very special earth, and life itself, is a miracle. A miracle needs Someone to work it. Furthermore, we have a Record with a surprising number of facts, geological and archaeological, to back It up. What’s more, this Record has been a reliable Predictor of future events. Therefore, as the song says, It stands.

      • Aziza says:

        Um, I would like to ask WHAT in the hell does that have to do with how discriminatory and conflicting christiantity is? All I said is that it shouldn’t be mentioned on this site. I mean, look at how off-topic the conversation has gone because of it. I didn’t say it wasn’t credable all I said was that it’s offencive and actually has not much to do with this in the first place. Yeah yeah it’s a miracle but that doesn’t mean that Christianity is the answer. God is ok but no specific religion should be mentioned.

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          I decide what shall, or shall not, bear mention on this site. Not you, and not any other commenter. As Editor-and-Administrator-in-Chief, that is my prerogative, and no one else’s. That is how any site like this works, no matter what anybody says.

          And I mention God because He is True.

          • Jake says:

            With an answer like that you will get no where, fast. All you have done is show everyone reading this that none of what you have said is fact whatsoever, just opinion. Saying what you said only solidifies the outside perspective of Christianity as a group of close minded jackasses. Everyone gets it, deep down inside you truly don’t believe in what you preach but if you try to debunk anything that seems threatening to the church, you might believe more. You have been trained well. Throw off those chains brother and open your eyes.

          • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

            Non sequitur. So I’ll throw it right back at you: throw off the illusion of freedom that atheism gives you.

      • Aziza says:

        I mean, really, what are you? one of those dianetics people? I mean, religion, no matter how you look at it, ISN’T FACT. It’s opinion. there is no ‘Hard fact’ to ANY religion, so why the crap would you bring this to a website like this? I’m just trying to politely ask you to stop trying to convert people and stick to objective, SCIENTIFIC facts. Just do your job.. and be professional.

        • Terry A. Hurlbut says:

          I am being professional. You’re the one being unprofessional here.

          And I declare the facts after long and hard investigation.

  10. j k lloyd says:

    albert einstein, fred hoyle and other notable and distinguished figures in virtually every field have at one time or another been asked about GOD and if science was a replacement for that kind of fundamental belief. strange as is may sound it seems thaat at one point or another either credit GOD or say they see HIM looking back at them from just beyond the limits of their knowledge. kind of funny that sort of thinking by a scientist and even a bigger laugh if some of the people who have posted here could step outside themselves for a moment and examine themselves

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