A matter of antimatter

Editorial photographers are often sent to universities or colleges to get images for stories of a scientific discovery or milestones in research. Despite the significance of the story and their truly fascinating nature, assignments of this type often offer little in the way of an eye catching visual.
Newspapers and internet sites are awash with countless photos of university professors sitting at office desks, in front of shelves of textbooks, with an unrecognizable image or indecipherable research information on their laptops.

However, yesterday I walked away from one such job with a couple decent options for publication – without, I might add, the use of a single textbook.

I was sent to get an image of the University of Calgary head of physics and astronomy, who was among the group of scientists who have announced that they have captured antimatter for the first time. The discovery was made in Geneva, Switzerland, but is an international venture, including researchers from Canada.

Thanks to a large portrait of the father of modern physics – Albert Einstein – on the wall of the faculty’s main office and a projection of an image of electron plasma that the researcher had on his laptop, we were able to come up with two relevant and visually interesting, yet completely different, images.Images from top:
-Rob Thompson, head of physics and astronomy at the University of Calgary, pictured with a projection of electron plasma in Calgary, Alberta November 17, 2010
-Rob Thompson, head of physics and astronomy at the University of Calgary, pictured with a painting of Albert Einstein in Calgary, Alberta November 17, 2010.

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