|Space Shuttle Endeavour|
By recording the traces cosmic rays make as they pass through, the AMS might uncover a universe that is now invisible. Although Ting is hesitant to make predictions about what the instrument will find, he said the instrument was designed with dark matter and antimatter in mind. Very little is known about dark matter although it makes up an estimated 90 percent of the mass in the universe.
Although Earth-based facilities have been built to create powerful streams of subatomic particles, Ting said their limits are more than 14 million times weaker than the power produced by cosmic rays in space.
“No matter how large an accelerator you build, you’re not going to compete with space,” Ting told reporters recently. Ting offered the news media a close look at the AMS before it was packed for loading into Endeavour’s cargo bay for launch.
See: AMS to Focus on Invisible Universe