Free Newsletters - Space News - Defense Alert - Environment Report - Energy Monitor
Mirror Matter And Interstellar Pioneers
Melbourne - Aug 19, 2002
The interactions of the known elementary particles (such as the electron, proton etc) violate mirror reflection symmetry, yet respect just about every other plausible symmetry.
In a certain sense, the fundamental particles are left-handed. It has been known for a long time that this inbalance of nature can be repaired if mirror matter exists. Where the ordinary particles are left-handed the mirror particles are right-handed.
The mirror particles interact with the ordinary ones mainly via gravity and perhaps by some new types of interactions. While the theory does not have huge popularity, it is nevertheless a well-defined mathematical theory with implications for many fields including: particle physics, astrophysics, meteoritics and planetary science.
Over the last few years, a significant number of papers have been written on the theory by several scientists including: Nicole Bell, Sergei Blinnikov, Sergei Gninenko, Sasha Ignatiev, Saibal Mitra, Zurab Silagadze, Ray Volkas, T.L.Yoon etc. and some papers have been written by myself as well.
While nobody would argue that the existence of mirror matter has been 'proven' (yet!), the mirror matter theory nevertheless seems to provide an explanation for a large range of puzzles.
Some of these puzzles have alternative more 'standard' explanations, and some don't. In the cases where there are alternative standard explanations, the mirror matter alternative is put forward because it explains some features of the particular phenomena better or more simply than the more 'standard' explanation.
I will very briefly consider 6 puzzles below (4 with no known 'standard' explanation and 2 with standard explanations, but where mirror matter seems to offer a better alternative).
Some Puzzles With No 'standard' Explanation
The leading idea to explain this puzzle was that some comets are able to deplete all of their volatile gases during their first close approach to the sun.
However, a recent study has found that the number of asteroid-like objects being discovered is 100 times too low to account for the expected number of cometary remnants.
The standard explanation - now - is that all of these comets must somehow disintegrate. Although some comets have been observed to disintegrate, the precise mechanism is not understood.
If these comets are made of mirror matter with some volatile ordinary matter component, then the fading of the comets is explained. The ordinary matter evaporates leaving behind an almost pure mirror matter core.
The fact that some comets are observed to disintegrate can also be explained, at least qualitatively, due to the internal heating of the ordinary matter within the core of the comet.
This explanation also ties in with the mirror matter interpretation of the Jordan and Tunguska events.
Of course, mirror matter is still hypothetical, and people should therefore by skeptical of its existence. For example, it is possible that the anomalous behaviour of the Pioneer spacecraft is due to some unidentified systematic error and that the anomalous orthopositronium experiments are due to faulty equipment etc.
But science is not so much about belief, but about testing scientific hypothesis. Thus, the explanations discussed here can be tested by future experiments and observations.
For example, if the Pioneer spacecraft are slowing down because of a mirror matter drag force, then a spacecraft with a larger cross-sectional area/mass ratio will slow down faster. If the Jordan/Tunguska events are due to a mirror matter body then mirror matter must exist in the ground at those impact sites.
This can potentially be extracted and its existence proven. If orthopositronium lifetime anomaly is caused by mirror matter, this can be checked by future experiments too. And, if mirror matter exists, the implications for society and science are extremely important. Clearly, there is good reason to take the theory seriously and test its predictions.
Mirror Planets and More
Subscribe To SpaceDaily Express
New Theory Asserts The Existence Of Mirror Matter
Melbourne - May 06, 2002
Invisible asteroids and other cosmic bodies made of a new form of matter may pose a threat to Earth, asserts Australian Physicist Dr. Robert Foot.
|The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2016 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.|