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Where did atoms originally form?

I am studying the Big Bang and trying to make sense of it. Is there research or ideas on how atoms initially formed? Has there been experiments done starting with basic subatomic particles to create a Hydrogen atom, for example? I know we can take existing atoms and smash them together to form higher-order atoms. The question is: Is there an existing level of research addressing (new) Atomic Synthesis?

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Closing Statement from Gary Post

I have asked this question or a form of it on TED and across multiple sites. I have yet to hear a good answer that does not involve deux ex machina (a ghost in the machine) type answer. For example, I read about references to Chaos Theory and plasma and etc. I'm beginning to think some of the Intelligent Design proponents have a better handle on this than mainstream science. At some point, the line between we don't know and the far-reaching fantastical musings screams for the questioner to just have faith that it was a naturally occurring process. Atomic synthesis might happen once or twice by chance, but how could something like this happen in exactly the same way in such a repeated, perfect fashion? It defies logic and believabilty.

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    Oct 21 2013: A particle physicist I know well has mentioned Steven Weinberg's short book The First Three Minutes as a good introduction to the beginning of the Universe. You might include that in your research.
    • Oct 22 2013: I will check that out. Thanks!

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