Precision measurement of antimatter made

The charge of antihydrogen atoms is neutral, at least out to eight decimal places, a new measurement made at CERN shows. Because hydrogen atoms have an electrically neutral charge and the charge of antihydrogen atoms is expected to match, the result, published June 3 in Nature Communications, isn’t surprising.

However, the new measurement is roughly a million times more precise than previous estimates. Continuing to make such precise measurements and possibly finding slight differences between atoms and antiatoms could help scientists determine why there is more matter than antimatter in the universe.

Ashley Yeager is the associate news editor at Science News. She has worked at The Scientist, the Simons Foundation, Duke University and the W.M. Keck Observatory, and was the web producer for Science News from 2013 to 2015. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Tennessee, Knoxville, and a master’s degree in science writing from MIT.

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