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Old 10-03-2016, 01:58 PM #1
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Default Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

There has been recently a bunch of Russian scientists who have recently proposed a valid method of generating antimatter through focusing high powered laser pulses.

This would be fantastic news for us, as it could lead to interstellar travel, antimatter reactors etc.

If you want to read the article : link

What can't lasers do in the world of quantum mechanics?



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Old 10-03-2016, 03:52 PM #2
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

Well I read the article and did not understand one iota of it. I feel incredibly stupid now. But hey Lasers.
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Old 10-03-2016, 04:04 PM #3
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

It is not easy stuff too get your head round, but the applications are cool.
It is basically using high powered lasers to make the most out of pair production. Virtual particles often come in pairs, (particle and antiparticle) but disappear within a short time frame. As the particle and antiparticle come together they annihilate. But if a large external force separate them, they live on and become actual particles. It is amazing to think, we are actually creating particles/antiparticles using lasers. Virtual particles are weird stuff.

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Old 10-03-2016, 04:06 PM #4
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

Very cool concept for interstellar space travel, but also very scary. Only a matter of time before someone uses it for antimatter based weapons and makes nuclear weapons look like firecrackers.
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Old 10-03-2016, 04:09 PM #5
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

Only a 'antimatter' of time more like
I know, I purposely left that out of the possible applications as I was focusing on the positive implications. But very true indeed.
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Old 10-03-2016, 04:12 PM #6
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

The problem is still, as far as I know, storing the antimatter in any reasonable amount for any reasonable length of time. Although it's certainly good to have a better way to produce it!
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Old 10-03-2016, 04:15 PM #7
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

Yes, definitely a step forward for us all. We will probably figure out a way of doing that with lasers in the future too.

I think the most important aspect is energy generation. I have calculated that Antimatter/Matter annihilation is roughly 266x more energetic than a deuterium/tritium fusion reaction. That is phenomenal energy density. Pure E=mc2.

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Old 10-05-2016, 12:41 AM #8
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by CurtisOliver View Post
Yes, definitely a step forward for us all. We will probably figure out a way of doing that with lasers in the future too.

I think the most important aspect is energy generation. I have calculated that Antimatter/Matter annihilation is roughly 266x more energetic than a deuterium/tritium fusion reaction. That is phenomenal energy density. Pure E=mc2.
It's been known for years thunderstorms can make antimatter and gamma rays.

So a strong enough laser pulse should be able to do it too. After all they're just both high forms of energy over a shot amount of time.
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Old 10-05-2016, 02:31 AM #9
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

While this concept might be new, positrons have been used for many years in PET scanners, which stands for positron emission tomography. In my study of QED, I have run into not only positrons, but also antineutrinos that go with neutrinos. All these particles have a life span in the order of 10^ -10 to 10^-12 seconds. They are observable, but containment? Just wishful thinking.
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Old 10-05-2016, 02:36 AM #10
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

Y'all are hurting my head

Seriously though, it's amazing to think our hobby can be linked to something as interesting as interstellar travel
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Old 10-05-2016, 03:26 AM #11
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lildutchboy7 View Post
Y'all are hurting my head

Seriously though, it's amazing to think our hobby can be linked to something as interesting as interstellar travel
not just anti matter but laser propulsion using like gigawatt lasers on a small mass thats the idea on break threw starshot to get to 15-20% the speed of light. Lasers would also be used to send back data from a interstellar probe.
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Old 10-05-2016, 04:05 AM #12
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Default Re: Possible method of antimatter generation by high power laser pulses.

“You can’t mix matter and anti-matter cold!” — Mr. Scott, Starship Enterprise

IN the recent article the OP mentioned--Russian guys calculated a possibility--their calculations, described in the latest issue of the journal Physics of Plasmas, are based on a conceptual quantum field theory of electromagnetic force prediction that “a strong electric field can, generally speaking, ‘boil the vacuum,’ which is full of ‘virtual particles,’ such as electron-positron pairs,”, called quantum electrodynamics - a chain reaction of sorts that is yet to be observed in a laboratory which states that a strong electric field can convert matter-antimatter particles from a virtual state to a real one, where they are directly observable.
So not reality/nothing real yet - just a concept and calcualtion of a possibility according to a theory--a prediction

Real world so far is:
That annihilation of matter and antimatter releases energy is well known--gamma rays to be more exact.

What is not well known is that unless the situation is non-standard, antimatter is not a power source. It is an energy transport mechanism.

Antimatter has to be created. This requires in itself a massive amount of energy. Even the storage of antimatter requires also a massive of energy. CERN explains, “There is no possibility to use antimatter as energy ‘source’. Unlike solar energy, coal or oil, antimatter does not occur in nature." This means that unless there exists "antimatter mines", antimatter is an energy transport mechanism, not a power source. The next problem is that antimatter is a very inefficient energy transport mechanism.

The efficiency of antimatter production and storage is also very low. About 1 billion times more energy is required to make antimatter than is finally contained in its mass. Current particle accelerators have an abysmal 0.000002% efficiency in converting electricity into antimatter for example. Researchers at CERN point out that it would take 100 quadrillion dollars and 100 billion years of running their accelerator to produce a single gram of antimatter.

In Star Trek, I believe they found drifts of antimatter in deep space which made convenient antimatter mines.

There is a short statment about on the CERN web site here: Can antimatter be used as an energy source? | Angels & Demons - The science behind the story

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