Our existence is one giant, unexplainable head scratch.
The universe shouldn’t technically exist, according to top scientists who have spent their careers trying to figure out how the beginning of everything didn’t immediately destroy itself.
The current model for the birth of the universe predicts that equal parts of matter and antimatter were produced by the Big Bang.
But, since matter and antimatter are identical except for their opposite electrical charges, they annihilate each other – a reaction that fuels the starship Enterprise on “Star Trek.” When the two collide, they combust in a violent eruption, meaning none of anything should be here today.
Researchers at CERN, the European Organization for Nuclear Research, have been looking for any type of variation between matter and antimatter that would have allowed matter to dominate and explain how you’re reading this right now.
In the past, the research team has tried to find differences in the particles’ mass, electric charge, even properties that haven’t been defined yet, but everything comes up identical.
Their latest study made the most precise measurements ever – 350 times more precious that previous numbers — of matter and antimatter’s magnetism. But that came up identical, too. The findings were recently published in Nature.
“All of our observations find a complete symmetry between matter and antimatter, which is why the universe should not actually exist,” Christian Smorra, the study’s lead author, said in a statement. “An asymmetry must exist here somewhere but we simply do not understand where the difference is. What is the source of the symmetry break?”
Researchers are now looking at the gravity of antimatter, to see whether or not it could fall “up” — hopefully providing the explanation we need to understand how we can explain anything at all.