Counterpart

New experiments are revealing hints of a world and a reality that are complete reflections of ours. This mirrorverse may be able to solve the mystery of the universe’s missing dark matter.

At first glance, everything looks familiar. The clock ticks placidly on the wall, cars motor along outside your window, the story you are reading has the same eye-catching pictures. But something is wrong. The clocks are running backwards. Cars are driving on the wrong side of the road. The article you are reading is written back to front. Suddenly, it clicks. You are looking at your own reflection.

Leah Broussard leads a study of neutron decay to understand correlations between electrons and antineutrinos as well as subtle distortions in the electron energy spectrum. The physicist, who hails from Louisiana, influenced the color scheme of the experiment’s newly installed instrument to reflect her home state’s biggest celebration—its spectrometer sports Mardi Gras green on the magnet, purple on the shielding, and gold inside the magnet and on safety bars.

The uncanny world on the other side of the mirror may not seem real to you. But Leah Broussard thinks parallel universes where everything is flipped might be very real indeed. Along with her colleagues at Oak Ridge National Laboratory in Tennessee, she is on the hunt for a universe that is identical to our own, but flipped so that it contains mirror atoms, mirror molecules, mirror stars and planets, and even mirror life. If it exists, it would form a bubble of reality nestling within the fabric of space and time alongside our own familiar universe, with some particles capable of switching between the two.

Source: https://www.ornl.gov/

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