back to article 'Negatively strange' antihypermatter made out of gold

Topflight international reverse-alchemy boffins say they have managed to transmute gold into an entirely new form of "negatively strange" antihypernucleic antimatter, ultra-bizarre stuff which cannot possibly occur naturally - except perhaps inside the cores of collapsed stars. The transmutation was carried out at the …


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  1. Bill 7

    How many femtoseconds did the new stuff last?

    Those little specks usually go "poof" pretty quick, so I doubt it's still hanging around to bother us.

  2. Anonymous Coward

    We break any gold

    I can see the adverts now. but for the ultimate alchemy I think there going in the wrong direction.

  3. Mr Brush

    A Title is Required - Why?

    Holy Poop! Don't tell me Laurence Gardner and Daivd Icke were actually onto something with all that MFKZT and Monoatomic Gold stuff!

    Mine's the lizard skin one with tinfoil hat in the pocket.

  4. Nebulo

    Reverse alchemy?

    That's the sort of thing that makes me love El Reg!

    Re "Negatively strange antihypernucleic antimatter" ... sod the new keyboard, you (or they) owe me a new brain.

    1. FIGJAM

      running out of geeky matter descriptions

      Yeh, fun wasnt it?

      A "Positively Strange" article title!!!

  5. Matt 14

    Strange, but positively charming

    I always thought strange quarks' opposite was charm? Or are there anti-strange and anti-charm quarks? (Does that mean anti-up uarks are not down, but sidyways perpendicular?)

    Now I know why I chose biology at skool. Physics students always had a certain strangeness about them.......

    1. Blue eyed boy

      Charmingly (anti)strange

      No, each flavour of quark (up, down, strange, charm, top, bottom) has its own antiquark.

      Strange nuclei have been created before - I heard of helium-(4+lambda) when I was at college back in the 1970's, so I'm not surprised that a light antinucleus containing a couple of antilambdas has been observed.

      Lambdas go poof on their own, usually with a subnanosecond lifetime. Conventional antinuclei are stable until they hit normal matter ((as long as they're not radioactive - no doubt antitritium has the same 12.6-year halflife as tritium), but if matter and antimatter do come together, expect an atomic-scale gamma-ray burst.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      In related news

      Scientists discover the reason physicists don't get laid, the anti-charm particle..

      1. Anonymous Coward

        good effort

        that comment was...... wait for it.....

        G O L D ! ! ! !

    3. Nigel Brown

      Quark, Strangness & Charm?

      Matt, I think you should put down the old Hawkwind albums.

  6. cookieMonster Silver badge

    This is why

    I just LOVE this site :-)

    "ultramundanity" or "hyper-boringness" & "The strangeness value could be non-zero"

    40 mins to beer o'clock on a Friday. Perfect!!

    Have a good one, one and all.

    1. techfreak

      3 and half-hours for me!

      It just no fair you brits start the week-end six hours before folks NA. I think its time we allow beer during lunch!

      1. Jimbo 6

        Maybe so...

        ...but you lot get an extra 6 hours to lie in bed on Monday morning

      2. Red Bren

        Friday lunchtime beer

        is already on the menu.

        Now can someone recommend a good breakfast wine?

  7. lglethal Silver badge
    Thumb Up

    I know that was an attempt at humour...

    ... but i have to admit that that is without a doubt the best attempt to explain the various types of quarks and how they interact with the world that ive ever read!

    Please Lewis write a book on quantum physics! You'll have the kids running back to the science courses in no time!

  8. Tom 35

    negative strangeness

    Not hyper-boringness as it's still strange. You would need a strange value of zero for hyper-boringness.

    I'm not sure how you would produce hyper-boringness, mixing positive strange and negative strange in an attempt to produce zero strange would likely result in a big bang and that's never boring.

    1. Anonymous Coward

      No I'm with Lewis on this one.

      If strangeness decreases from a positive value to 0, meaning not strange at all, then by definition, a negative strangeness must be even less strange than not strange at all, and certainly not a different kind of strange, which by definition would have to be positive.

      "Hyper-boringness", well I'm not sure about that though....

      1. MadonnaC
        Thumb Up

        Prachett style naming?


        1. Rattus Rattus

          Why not

          just name it Gordon Brown?

  9. H 5

    -1 != 0

    Mundanity is the lack of interest, boringness is the negative of interest, so we really should be using the latter.

    of course, the S - Axis could invert upon crossing the threshold from matter to anti-matter ( think 1/x ), and so they have created anti-strange-hypernuclei rather than anti-boring-hypernuclei.

    Right, Im off for some anti-hyper-sobriety.

  10. The Grump
    Paris Hilton

    and Jesus wept...

    We're this close (unsteadly holds thumb and finger 1/2 inch apart) to turning this planet into string cheese, in accordance with established string theory of alternate space / time realities. Hopefully, I'll be too drunk to notice.

    Another pint, please !

    You know who, because she is an expert on string theory of 2 piece swimsuits. Sweet !

  11. Anonymous Coward

    math of the bizzare?


    That would be in the inverse of strange, so it's ... normal?

    Beer icon, because if I drink enough of it, maybe I'll understand (or at least I will THINK I understand it).

  12. This post has been deleted by its author

    1. Sorry that handle is already taken. Silver badge

      re: wtf

      I think you might have stumbled into the wrong website

  13. solarian


    You should try the Lewis Page drinking game: on Fridays, someone with a laptop tries to count up the number of times the words "boffin", "boffinry", etc., have cropped up that day (or week, under international competition rules). Then, at the end of the evening and after a few bevvies,line up one shot per mention. Compounds such as "warboffinry" count as double. The first to finish the shots wins. Today I count 8.

  14. Mystic Megabyte
    Paris Hilton

    Don't be negative!

    Very interesting story, as I read all that teknikal stuff I went from being dis-gruntled into a state of over-gruntled. Help!

    Paris? 'cos she can turn gold into trash.

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    New word needed?

    '*We would suggest a special name for the quality of negative strangeness. Perhaps "ultramundanity" or "hyper-boringness".'

    May I propose 'Bracknell'?

    BTW. One thing you left out of this article - does the new stuff confer superpowers?

  16. GavinL

    My head hurts

    This makes standard quantum physics look simple.

  17. Anonymous Coward


    familiarity ?

    friendly ?

  18. ian 22


    ... can we use it as a weapon?

  19. Anonymous Coward

    When are they going to introduce "imaginary" strangeness?

    In Mathematics there is the concept of the square root of (-1) leading to "imaginary" numbers (operator i for mathematicians, j for Engineers). How long will it be before nuclear physics has to start applying its equivalent of the j operator?

    Or am I just imagining things here?

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Why the surprise?

    I'm no nukular physisist, but why such gobsmacked surprise from the boffins that they've found a nucleus of anti-helium 3 that contains an anti-strange quark (and in place of which other anti-quark? I thought these guys lived in groups of three...) Surely being symettrical to matter is what you'd expect from anti-matter... the clue is sorta in the name.

  21. Mike 140

    OT more laser weaponry has got to be worth a Lewis article

    1. Lewis Page 1

      Here you go fella

  22. Neil Cooper
    Paris Hilton

    I'll take a bag of assorted Negatively strange antihypernucleic antimatter please what can we actually _do_ with this?

    ...and where's the Paris angle?

    1. Captain DaFt
      Thumb Up

      @ Neil Cooper

      "What can we do with it?", you ask?

      Why learn, of course! Then gawp as some beknighted sod creates a whole new class of gimcrackery with it that we're amazed we ever got along without.

      (It's what we do second best, after wars.)

  23. Hayden Clark Silver badge

    So it's ...



    ...... stuff?

  24. As is your wont

    El Reg's olde english

    Beautiful. Besides being a boffin, I am also a poet. This article makes me remember why I read El Reg.

  25. Robert Hill

    @ian 22

    For god's sake, DO NOT suggest to the Amerikan's to use this as a weapon...

    You'll get a modern-day Peter Sellers sitting in a wheelchair, screaming about the upcoming "anti-strange particle weapons gap!"...

    And the next thing you know, we are done for...probably too fast to even know what hit us. Remember, don't cross the streams...

    1. Mr Mark V Thomas

      Re: Robert Hill's post

      <i>"it's no Moon, it's a Space Station..."</i>.

      (After all, Battle Stations 1 & 2 a/k/a "The Death Star 1 & 2", were reportedly powered by Hypermatter Reactors, according to the Star Wars Expanded Universe...)

  26. Anonymous Coward

    You can't use 'ultra-boringness'...

    ...because I already have to work with him.

  27. Anonymous Coward
    Black Helicopters


    this sounds like a russian doll or fractal pattern, I bet if they could see the ant matter of the anti matter close up, that to would have it's own anti matter - like looking into a mirror looking into a mirror - the reflection goes on and on.

    In the nature of spirals, small and big are relative to what size you are compared to thee object and what distance you are from it, a spiral of pasta looks big if it's close to your eye!

  28. Charles Smith

    In a parallel universe

    ... there are some guys getting really pissed with the guys in our universe who keep sending them scrunched particles. They will retaliate by dumping negative even aunty stranger particles in the processors of our iPhones.

  29. Anonymous Coward

    What's next?

    A really strange eleven-dimensional anti-periodic table? The 3-D illustration's just to sucker us in.

    I, for one, welcome the demise of the old cluttered one - so many itty-bitty notes and numbers.

  30. Badbob
    Paris Hilton

    So that's where all that gold I put in an envelope went to! Glad to see it went to a more scientific use than being melted down into sovereign rings and name bracelets.

    I for one bow down to our new strangely gold smashing, negative antihypermatter weapon bearing boffin overlords.

    Paris - because if anything is negatively strange, it is she.

  31. Space Genetics

    Droplet of death

    By the way, look my formulae, which were written before this article was published:


    p + p + 1000 TeV = p + p + N(usd) + N(u~s~d~).

    N(usd) - strange droplet.

    N(u~s~d~) - strange antidroplet.

    N(u~s~d~) annihilate with matter.

    N(usd) will ruin the Earth like these:

    N(uds) + p = (N+1)(uds) + K+ = (N+1)(uds) + e+ + 500 MeV.

    (N+1)(uds) + n = (N+2)(uds) + K0 = (N+2)(uds) + 500 MeV.


    I reread the LSAG report once more and found there another error. The binding energy of constituent element of strangelet is not several MeV, as they wrote there, but about 500 MeV. So, all their talks about thermal bath are erroneous. Strange matter is very dangerous!

    The value 500 TeV, as a binding energy of (uds) in a strangelet N(uds), can easily be received from comparison with the rest energy of kaons K+ and K0, which are correspondingly 493 MeV and 497 MeV.

    Kaons (K+=us; K0=ds) can be side products, occurring at the time of proton (p=uud) and neutron (n=udd) capture by strange matter N(uds):

    N(uds) + p = (N+1)(uds) + K+ = (N+1)(uds) + e+ + 500 MeV.

    (N+1)(uds) + n = (N+2)(uds) + K0 = (N+2)(uds) + 500 MeV.




    Extremely powerful explosion.

    This explosion has specific energy output, which is hundred times bigger than under the nuclear explosion.

    By the way, at the time of November-December collisions there were more Kaons output that it was theoretically predicted. That means that we are very close to creation of this dead droplet, which can transform the whole Earth into 10-meterr lump of strange\dead matter.

    Space observations says us that periods of pulsars are almost do not change. That means that strange matter is very stable.

    Read about strange matter, strangelets, and strange stars in Wikipedia. I think that our civilization is crazy. From one hand, it already knows about a deadly dangerous strange matter; from the other hand, it tries to create that dead droplet at colliders. I do not understand you, people.

    I wish you to become mentally healthy and STOP all powerful colliders.

    Somebody wrote: Also the mass of a proton is 938.272 MeV/c^2 and the mass of a uds is 1,115.683 MeV/c^2.


    Mass of a free proton is 938.272 MeV/c^2.

    Mass of a proton in deuteron is several MeV/c^2 less.

    Mass of a proton in He is several MeV/c^2 less.

    Mass of a proton in C is several MeV/c^2 less.

    Mass of a proton in Fe is several MeV/c^2 less, and minimal.

    These mass differences say us about binding energy.

    Strange droplet consisting of a several (uds) is unstable and decay.

    AFAIK some authors said that droplet could be stable if it has at least 10 elements.

    The more number of “strange nucleons” inside the droplet, the more binding energy.

    I think that its binding energy properties are analogues to those of a magnetic hole. So I think that specific binding energy has a limit and it lays somewhere near 500 MeV (or about of 1/2 of protons rest energy).

    Note. My computation for magnetic hole gives: energy of ruined protons splits per two parts: 2/3 goes into creation of magnetic field; 1/3 goes into binding energy or simply emitted with radiation.

    Strange matter has fermionic structure.

    Magnetic hole has bosonic structure.

    CERN physicist can create dead droplet, having fermionic, bosonic or scirmionic structure. Any such condensate is dangerous, because it can transform the whole Earth into dead extremely dense matter.

    Now they collide protons with energies of about 0.45 TeV per proton. In any of the next days the energy can be risen to 3.5 TeV. That can create a microscopic droplet of death, and in a 1000 seconds our Earth will be exploded.

    PS: In the Galaxy at the time of about 100 000 000 000 years almost all stars dies and the same number of stars are born. Now is the time for our Sun. Who will push the button?

    1. Cameron Colley

      @Space Genetics

      Assuming you are correct in your prediction of doom and you're not just using nonsense figures (I have no idea) -- why should we worry?

      If you have said this may drink up 80% of the earth's liquid water or remove all cloud cover or anything which may, at a pinch, be survivable by the human race then, OK, we should worry -- but if everything will just "go bang" it's not like there will be anyone left to mourn our loss.

  32. tumbleworld

    Strange Days

    Boring only works as anti-strange if you think strange things are interesting, surely?

    According to dear old, the proper antonym for strange is familiar, as suggested by the AC above. "Familiar antihypermatter" just doesn't quite cut it though, unless Lewis wants to come over as all blazé. So devils take proper English, I'm with MadonnaC.

    Egnarts FTW.

  33. Moonwolf

    Wouldn't that be ...


    Mine's the one with the cat in the pocket ... or is it?

  34. Phil P

    hydrogen includes deuterium & tritium?

    Dredging old school memories here, but it seems strange to define hydrogen as a proton with no neutron. hydrogen = { protium, deuterium, tritium }, protium has no neutrons and hydrogen can have 0, 1 or 2.

    At least, that's how I remember learning it.

    1. Blue eyed boy

      And also

      Hydrogen consists so overwhelmingly of protium that the distinction can get a bit blurred. The presence of tiny amounts of deuterium don't usually matter. (Deuterium is toxic in higher concentrations - 25% protium replacement or more.) As tritium is radioactive, there's not much of it about, the world's supply needs constant replenishment from cosmic rays and man-made radioisotope generators.

      Single atoms of hydrogen isotopes 4, 5, 6 and 7 have been detected. They don't live long enough to do any chemistry with, having half-lives many times shorter than lambdas. No names have been proposed for these.

  35. crosspatch

    Negative Strange

    Wouldn't a "negative strange" be a "familiar"?

    1. Kevin Dwyer


      Familiar - my mother in law has one of those

      No- pass me her cloak, the black one with a pin laden effigy of myself in the pocket.

  36. Bruno de Florence


    what do you expect from an object named after the content of James Joyce's literary output?

  37. Anonymous Coward

    Lord Percy

    a nugget of purest green?

  38. Jim Marshall


    How about "Semprini"? Nobody is using it for any practical purpose right now...

  39. Anonymous Coward

    Title required

    "But international boffins analysing the RHIC gold-buster results have now discovered a an anti-deuterium nucleus containing an antiproton, an antineutron - and, gobsmackingly - an "anti-strange" quark."

    Um - nope - you've got an unbound quark there...

  40. The Original Ash

    They didn't expect this?

    So we have protons and anti-protons.

    Neutrons and anti-neutrons.

    Why not quarks and anti-quarks?

    Seems logical to me! I don't know what all the fuss is about...

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