What Is Antimatter?
The Fermilab accelerator complex accelerates protons and antiprotons close to the speed of light.
Credit: Fermilab

Antimatter sounds like the stuff of science fiction, but it’s very real. It is, however, elusive.

Antimatter particles are subatomic particles with properties opposite those of normal matter particles. So a positron (positively charged) is the antiparticle equivalent of the electron (negatively charged). When a particle and its antiparticle meet, they annihilate (are destroyed), releasing a lot of energy.

Antimatter particles are created in ultra high-speed collisions. There was a lot of it after the Big Bang. But today antimatter is rare.

SpaceKids on SPACE.com provides simple, straightforward answers to really big cosmic questions. See more SpaceKids questions.