This experiment is the first of it’s kind and has created something quite interesting. The only known matter in the world with ‘negative mass’ has been created by physicists from Washington State University!
Every single other physical object in the world that we are familiar with does not accelerate backward under pressure, but this mass does. The phenomenon itself is known as the intuitive side of Neuton’s Second Law of Motion, force is equal to the mass of an object times its acceleration (F=ma). This is something we could use to explain some of the more bizarre things in space like black holes and things of that sort. It was proved more than a decade ago that negative mass could, in fact, exist in this Universe but until now creating a substance with ha negative mass has resulted in failure after failure.
Scientists held previous assumptions that negative mass would require some sort of exotic particles that ‘did not exist in our Universe’ but were proven wrong. This assumption was held because if something like this did exist it would defy Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity. In order to create this negative mass, scientists cooled rubidium to absolute zero. This created a Bose-Einstein condensation in which particles are only able to move very slowly and behave more like waves. This is similar to how it is described in the famous double slit experiment.
After this point, scientists used lasers to kick atoms around until they begin spinning backward. You see, when the rubidium rushes out fast enough it behaves as if it had negative mass. This lab created negative mass can now be used to test out theories in regards to dark matter. This being because scientists have suggested in the past that dark matter and dark energy in itself should be considered negative mass.
Michael Forbes a professor from Washington State who took part in this says this about its creation:
“Once you push, it accelerates backward,”
“It looks like the rubidium hits an invisible wall. What’s a first here is the exquisite control we have over the nature of this negative mass, without any other complications”
“With negative mass, if you push something, it accelerates toward you.”
According to scientists Saoussen Mbarek and Manu Paranjape from the University de Montreal in Canada, there is a solution to Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity that allows negative mass to exist without breaking assumptions that are essential. They have even hinted at these different positive and negative masses would create a plasma of some sort that would eventually allow for space travel.
What do you think about this amazing creation and where do you think it will lead us in the future? For more information check out the video below. Isn’t this amazing?