CONCEPTS

What is the origin of matter?

We explain everything about the origin of the subject, the currently accepted theories and their process until the formation of life.

  1. What is the origin of matter?

To explain what the origin of matter is, it  is necessary to go back to the theories currently accepted regarding the origin of the universe , because given the laws of physics established, the amount of matter and energy in the universe must be constant.

This theory about the origin of what exists is that of the so-called ” Big Bang “ (“The Big Bang”), and explains that the universe was originally a hyperconcentrated particle that contained all the energy and matter we know very densely accumulated.

This point was in itself tremendously unstable and 13.798 million years ago  there was a gigantic explosion that released a huge amount of heat (estimated at 1032 ° C) and that began the process to expand, and therefore Cooling of the universe.

As the temperature decreased, the different known elements began to form , following the subatomic particles we know: protons , neutrons and electrons , which began to combine to build atoms.

It is estimated that the first appeared around 3 minutes 20 seconds after the explosion , when the temperature of the universe had dropped to 1000 million degrees Celsius.

Initially, the only elements created were hydrogen and helium, the simplest known, in gigantic gas clouds suspended in a vacuum. The atoms began to attract each other due to the gravity of their own mass, and increasingly dense clouds of gas formed , whose weight and internal pressure began to rise, to the point, that their atomic nuclei began to fuse, releasing gigantic amounts of energy, as happened with atomic bombs or inside nuclear reactors, but on a much larger scale. Thus the first stars were born .

Inside these stars there was (and still occurs) a massive nuclear reaction that emits a lot of light and a lot of heat, and that by fusing the atomic nuclei of the elements that constituted them, it gives rise to new, more complex elements.

These stars were massive (between 3 and 16 times the size of the Sun) , so their massive gravity was enough to force the atomic nuclei, increasing (and therefore with greater electrical charge), to merge despite of the repulsive forces that drive them away, generating more and more energy and heat.

That same gravity is what prevents the stars from dissipating in their own explosion, keeping together the material generated in a large space fireball.

Thus were born oxygen, nitrogen or carbon, and subsequently even heavier elements. Eventually there were so many that began to be organized in layers, the densest sinking into the star, giving rise to even more complex elements, almost reaching the total known elements.

Eventually these original stars fulfilled their life cycle and exploded in large supernovae , after burning all their fuel or reaching dangerous levels of matter that interrupted the cycle of nuclear reactions.

Then the elements enclosed in its interior spread at full speed through the universe, with a force such that many underwent changes and combinations along the way , thus giving rise to the heaviest and final elements of the periodic table .

These different elements, scattered throughout space, would eventually begin to come together and cool, combining with each other to form no longer new atoms, but complex molecules and chemicals.

These clusters of complex matter later would be planets, asteroids and all the astral bodies we know , including the planet Earth and also new, young suns, like ours.

This matter is also that which inside our planet would be combined into increasingly complex substances and eventually chains of molecules that would start life itself.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Back to top button