Scott Lang was an electronics expert who could not support his family doing repair work so he turned his talent to burglary. Apprehended, he served his prison sentence and was paroled in three years for good behavior. Lang had furthered his studies of electronics while in prison and was soon hired by Stark International to work in its design department. When his daughter was diagnosed as having a serious congenital heart condition, Lang sought the aid of surgeon Dr. Erica Sondheim, whom he believed to have been held prisoner at Cross Technological Enterprises. Desperate to help his daughter, Lang decided to resort to burglary. Breaking into the New Jersey home of Dr. Henry Pym, Lang stole his Ant-Man uniform and a shrinking gas canisters. Unknown to him, Pym observed the theft and in his current disguised as Yellowjacket, followed Lang, curious to see what use he would do with the paraphernalia. Garbed as Ant-Man, Lang broke into cross and discovered Dr. Sondheim was indeed being held prisoner by Darren Cross, president of Cross Technological Enterprises, who needed her expertise to correct his own heart condition. Rescuing her and defeating Cross, Lang was relieved when Sondheim was able to save the life of his daughter. Lange intended to return the Ant-Man costume to its owner and turned himself in, but Henry Pym, aware the use which Lang put the stolen goods, offered to let him keep them, provided he put them to lawful use.
Since that time, Lang has dawned the Ant-Man costume for various occasions to assist Iron Man, the Avengers, or the law, although he still considers himself a part time costume crime fighter. When Stark International became Stane International Scott Lange resigned out of respect to Tony Stark, its former head.
Dividing his time between his new identity and his daughter, Ant-Man worked alongside several super heroes, frequently clashing with the mercenary trainer called the Taskmaster, against whom he aided the Avengers on two occasions. When Baron Zemo’s Masters of Evil took control of Avengers Mansion, Ant-Man helped defeat the criminal super-team. He was hired by the Fantastic Four as an electronics expert when Mister Fantastic was believed dead, and he was soon inducted into the team; feeling outclassed against the powerful menaces the Fantastic Four faced, he nevertheless proved himself against a variety of foes and gained new confidence after repelling possession by the insectoid Grottu.
Following Mister Fantastic’s return, Ant-Man joined Heroes for Hire; upon its disbandment, he provided backup to both the Avengers and the Fantastic Four. He also dated former super hero Jessica Jones, although their relationship never became serious. Ant-Man was subsequently invited to join the Avengers full-time, a role he accepted after losing custody of his daughter to his ex-wife.
Joining at the same time as Jack of Hearts, Ant-Man had a clash of personalities with the younger hero, but the two worked together to rescue Cassie from an abductor before Jack seemingly perished. Jack briefly returned, under the control of the maddened Scarlet Witch, and exploded again, incinerating Ant-Man.
Ant-Man possesses the power to reduce himself to size of an ant, approximately one half inch in height, by the means a rare group of subatomic particles called the Pym Particles after the man who discovered them, Henry Pym. The nature, the source, and mechanics of the Pym particles remains a mystery, but the properties and behaviors can be determined. The Pym particles are suspended within an unknown gas, which is confined and stored in special magnetic field generating canisters.
When Ant-Man releases a certain quantity of this gas containing the Pym Particles in his immediate vicinity, the particles penetrating his skin, touched a nerve endings in his skin, and are transmitted by the nervous system to the brain. Interacting with the electrical impulses of the brain, the particles create an organism-wide “producing field,” which is energized by mental command. Thus activated, the field produces an man’s entire body at a uniform rate to the size he is determined which is usually ant size, although he can adopt sizes between his normal and that of an ant if he so desires. Ant-Man’s mass is not compressed into reduced stature. Instead it is somehow extended into an extra physical dimension that is opened by the activity of the Pym Particles, from which the mass can later be reclaimed. It takes about two seconds from the time the Pym Particles reach the brain for Ant-Man to reduce to ant-size.
It is not known how many Pym Particles constitute a sufficient quantity to enable degeneration of a “producing field.” The quantity of particles, however, does not determine how small an organism can shrink (that is determined by the mental command of the user.) Iit is also not known what effect, if any, the exposure to and over abundance of Pym Particles and a single time will have. It is known, however, that continuous exposure to the Pym Particles over prolonged periods of time enables certain brains (such as Henry Pym’s) to generate “producing fields ” spontaneously, without contact with the new quantity of particles. (Scott Lange has not been exposed to the particles long enough to determine if he will be similarly affected.) With a disability to spontaneously to generate “reducing fields” is permanent or if it fades in time is unknown. Also unknown is the time, if any, of the and potency of the particles. So far Ant-Man has been able to remain ant size as long as he has wished, a matter of hours. If Ant-Man is rendered unconscious while in his reduced state, he remains and is not spontaneously revert to normal size.
Returning to normal size, Ant-Man releases a certain quantity of gas containing another type of Pym Particles in his immediate vicinity. Like the particles that produce the “reducing field,” the particles also penetrate the skin, touched the nerve endings, and are transmitted by the nervous system to the brain. Also interacting with the electrical impulses of the brain, and particles create an organism wide “enlarging field,” which is energized by mental command. Ant-Man’s body grows at a uniform rate, until he has reclaimed all the mass that was extended extra dimensionally. At that point, since there is no more of his mass with in the extra physical dimension, the “enlarging field” is no longer energized, and the enlargement process stops. (The particles of the “enlarging gas” can be used by certain individuals to grow larger than their normal stature.) In this case, extra pseudo organic mass is acquired from the same extra physical dimension where access organic mass is extended into reducing process, and the “reducing gas ” is used to regain normal stature.
How Ant-Man mentally determines when he has reduced himself to precisely the size he wishes (ant size) is not fully understood. Certainly there are visual indicators in his surrounding environment, but the process occurs so quickly that it would be remarkable to be able to see the scale indicators. Presumably, knowing the precise rate at which the shrinking process occurs, he could time the process so that he deactivates the “reducing field” when he reaches the desired stature. Again, this would involve split-second timing. However he manages to do it, Ant-Man has been able to calibrate his shrinking process so that he attains within 1/32 of an inch of his usual half-inch size. (He could use successive dosages of the “shrinking gas” or “enlarging gas” to make fine adjustments of his height.)
The smallest size the Pym Particles can enable an organism to retain is not known. Both Henry Pym and Scott Lang have used multiple dosages of the “shrinking gas” to shrink to submicroscopic stature. (The success of dosages enabled them to mentally adjust to the experience with a short “rest stops”; a single dosage would theoretically be enough to make the “journey” nonstop.) When 99.99+ percent of an organism’s mass is extraordinarily shunted, the organism is automatically sent into a “subatomic universe,” on the countless alternate universe accessible to Earth only by the mass shunting process.
Ant-Man can use the Pym Particles to reduce other objects and organisms at the same time he reduces himself. Touching the object or organism he wishes to shrink, he generates the “reducing field” and that usual manner, and then mentally extends the field to encompass his “baggage” or “passenger.” How far he can extend this field is unknown. So far all he has “carried” with him has been one other person or ant. Ant-Man’s uniform and paraphernalia shrink with him by this process.
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