antimatter n.

matter composed of antiparticles

SF Encyclopedia


  • 1934 Science News-Letter (vol. 25, no. 672) 24 Feb. 115/2 page image

    The sources behaved in every way like respectable atoms. For the sinks one had to assume a kind of negative or anti-matter. This was the difficult which kept those old theories of matter in the realm of fantastic speculation, although the mathematics was perfect.

  • 1948 L. Jánossy Cosmic Rays & Nuclear Physics 6

    The other type of matter might be called the ‘anti matter.’ In collision the two types of matter would annihilate each other and give rise to intense radiation.

  • 1953 Science News Letter 14 Mar. 169/1

    The existence or creation of anti-matter, or the negative analogue of the proton…is theoretically possible.

  • 1954 A. Cameron Letter in Startling Stories Summer 8/2 page image

    The only remarkable thing about anti-matter is that if it were brought into contact with ordinary matter a mutual annihilation would take place, with the mass being converted into energy.

  • 1959 ‘L. del Rey’ Mine Host, Mine Adversary in Fantastic Universe Oct. 8/2 page image Lester del Rey bibliography

    The ship must still be equipped with an antique boron-fusion motor; no anti-matter inverter ever made that much racket. But the leap to hyperspeed was smooth, indicating the engineer knew his job.

  • 1966 ‘C. Smith’ Under Old Earth in Galaxy Science Fiction Feb. 27 Cordwainer Smith bibliography

    The beat and the heat and the neat repeat of the notes that poured forth from the congohelium—metal never made for music, matter and anti-matter locked in a fine magnetic grid to ward off the outermost perils of space.

  • 1970 J. Blish Spock must Die! vii. 52 James Blish

    The fireball swelled intolerably as the matter and anti-matter in the doomed Klingon’s warp-drive.

  • 1973 A. C. Clarke Rendezvous with Rama (1974) 20 Arthur C. Clarke

    Nothing whatsoever had happened when the expanding cloud of vapour arrived on target—and a matter anti-matter reaction involving even a few milligrams would have produced an awesome firework display.

  • 1982 S. Cooper Black Fire i.48 Sonni Cooper bibliography

    The vehicle had warp potential, a matter/antimatter drive, and a life-support system as sophisticated as any he had ever seen.

  • 1987 D. Brin Uplift War 291 David Brin

    At the edge of the forest Athaclena saw their special weapons team begin setting up their only antimatter projectors.

  • 1990 G. Bear Queen of Angels (1991) i.iv. 20 Greg Bear

    When the antimatter drive ceased some four years after launch, AXIS entered a cold, quiet mode, its functions reduced to the simplest routine of maintenance, sensing and launch of transponders.

  • 1993 D. Carey Great Starship Race ix. 140 Diane Carey

    The result is highly ionized particles, hard radiation, dust, debris, and an above normal content of residual antimatter.

  • 1996 J. Gunn Joy Machine xiv. 209 James E. Gunn

    It wouldn’t be difficult to jury-rig a device—say an antimatter payload contained within a neutronium shell.

  • 1998 C. Pellegrino Afterword in C. Pellegrino & G. Zebrowski Star Trek: Next Generation: Dyson Sphere (1999) 209

    The Dooglasse ship…is in fact an antimatter propelled Valkyrie (most relativistic rockets, just like most supersonic transport jets, are bound to look alike).

  • 2017 C. Cussler & G. Brown Nighthawk 264 bibliography

    I know about the Penning traps…along with containment units, the cryogenic equipment and the entire system you built to harvest and store antimatter. That’s why the Nighthawk had a polar orbit. That’s why it stayed in the dark, where the temperatures in space are closer to absolute zero. That’s why it was up there for three years, because it’s a very slow process.”

Research requirements

antedating 1953

Earliest cite

Science News Letter

Research History
Ben Ostrowsky submitted a 2017 quote from Clive Cussler and Graham Brown's "Nighthawk".
Fred Shapiro submitted a 1948 cite from Lajos Jánossy.
Garson O'Toole submitted a 1934 cite from the Science News-Letter.

Last modified 2021-03-08 03:02:11
In the compilation of some entries, HDSF has drawn extensively on corresponding entries in OED.