It could take until 2026 to build stronger evidence for what happened to antimatter
Kamioka Observatory/ICRR/The University of Tokyo
A new study hints that neutrinos might behave differently than their antimatter counterparts. The result amplifies scientists’ suspicions that the lightweight elementary particles could help explain why the universe has much more matter than antimatter.
In the Big Bang, 13.8 billion years ago, matter and antimatter were created in equal amounts. To tip that balance to the universe’s current, matter-dominated state, matter and antimatter must behave differently, a concept known as CP, or “charge parity,” violation.
In neutrinos, which come in three types — electron, muon and tau — CP violation can be measured by observing how neutrinos oscillate, or change from one type to another. Researchers with the T2K experiment found that muon neutrinos morphed into electron neutrinos more often than expected, while muon antineutrinos became electron antineutrinos less often. That suggests that