200,000 years for 1mg of antimatter?

  • Thread starter galoku
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  • #1
Ok, I've just been reading this http://www.cem.msu.edu/~cem181fp/antimatter/antimatter.html and it says that even if Fermilabs increases its production of antimatter to 5 times its current output then it would still take another 200,000 years to get 1 miligram of that stuff...
I know this might sound simple but can't they build lots of labs arround the world where they all produce the same amount of antimatter as the one they have now? that would reduce the amount of time we would have to wait for that darn 1mg, right?
 
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  • #2
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Well, that's with current technology. Remember in those 200,000 years, the world population of scientists wouldn't be exactly just wasting time. That number should fall in time.

Notice that Fermilab isn't a dedicated Antimatter factory, but a laboratory. If we should ever wish to go into full industrial production of the stuff, then we can produce it at far better efficiencies than currently. But for the moment, we don't quite need all that much antimatter.

Remember, a little antimatter goes a long long way.
E = mc^2
= 0.001 * 9 * 10^16
= 90000000000 kJ in 1 miligram

This is equivalent to the amount of energy given out in the complete combustion of 1.6 *10^6 kg of Methane.
 
  • #3
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Oh, and you need to double that because it's matter-antimatter annihliation, turning the reacted matter into energy too.
 
  • #4
wolram
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re anti matter

and it costs a lot
 
  • #5
russ_watters
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Originally posted by galoku
I know this might sound simple but can't they build lots of labs arround the world where they all produce the same amount of antimatter as the one they have now? that would reduce the amount of time we would have to wait for that darn 1mg, right?
Certainly, let's build 200,000 labs. Er, wait, if they cost $10 billion apiece (if we use Philadelphia building contractors) that would require the entire next hundred years of the US's GDP.

I don't think anti-matter will ever be a useful thing since it requires such a vast amount of energy to make a quantumitessimal (if that's not a word, it should be) quantity of it.
 

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