A reader on the Journal of Nuclear Physics posted a link to an article on the Phys.org website reporting on the work of a University of Portsmouth (UK) professor, Melvin Vopson, who has proposed an experiment to prove whether information has mass.
Here is the introduction of the article:
Physicist Dr. Melvin Vopson has already published research suggesting that information has mass and that all elementary particles, the smallest known building blocks of the universe, store information about themselves, similar to the way humans have DNA.
Now, he has designed an experiment—which if proved correct—means he will have discovered that information is the fifth form of matter, alongside solid, liquid, gas and plasma.
Here is a link to his paper titled: “Experimental protocol for testing the mass-energy-information equivalence principle”
The experiment proposed involves carrying out a matter-antimatter annihilation process, and is claimed by the author to be highly achievable using technologies currently available. From the abstract of the paper:
“When an electron–positron annihilates, in addition to the two 511 keV gamma photons resulting from the conversion of their rest masses into energy, we predict that two additional low energy photons should be detected, resulting from their information content erasure. At room temperature, a positron–electron annihilation should produce two ∼50 µm wavelength infrared photons due to the information erasure. This experiment could, therefore, confirm both information conjectures and the existence of information as the fifth state of matter in the universe.”