How do we detect antimatter in space?

23 January 2011

Question

How do we detect antimatter in space? What are you actually looking for?”

Answer

We posed this question to Professor Andy Parker from the High Energy Physics Group at Cambridge University...

Andy - Well, it depends which sort of antimatter particle we're looking for, but basically, you have lots of detectors which can tell the mass of particles, and if you put them into a magnetic field, they bend one way or the other, depending on their electric charge. So if we see something with a proton mass and a negative charge, then we identify it as an antiproton, and similarly for anti-electrons which are the dominant things that you would expect to see coming at you.

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