# Can a hypothetical atom be made out of positrons and electrons ?

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• scythe327
In summary, the conversation discusses the possibility of creating a novel atomic model where protons are replaced by anti-electrons (positrons) in the nucleus, resulting in equal masses for protons and electrons. This idea is rooted in the desire for symmetry and may have implications for energy and entropy within the system. However, due to nuclear forces, this hypothetical atom is not possible in reality. The conversation also touches on the stability of positrons and their interactions with electrons in orbitals.
scythe327
TL;DR Summary
What would be the measurable changes in the properties of the atom except mass ,if positrons are present in the place of protons(considering the hypothetical case that positrons are stable) and if so what are the changes and also is it really possible to create such hypothetical atom in real world.
I am a Computer Science Engineering student at a local university in India and I was really moved by the CERN youtube channel and it got me curious about the particles like electrons and protons, I love symmetry in nature and was not a huge fan of proton being nearly 2000 times the mass of electron possessing the same charge (Not that my opinion matters),I did some reading and found out about the quarks and virtual photons interactions that gives protons its charge , as i mentioned earlier , the love for symmetry made me wonder
we could develop a novel atomic model that suggests the possibility of creating an atom with protons and electrons having equal masses. In this model, we propose utilizing anti-electrons (positrons) as the "protons" in the atom, which share the same mass as electrons but possess a positive charge.

By considering this hypothetical scenario, where the masses of protons and electrons are equal, I envision significant implications for energy and entropy within the system. This concept is rooted in the notion that lower mass particles may result in lower entropy, potentially leading to enhanced efficiency and novel behaviors within the atom.

I do know that mass and entropy are not directly related but I wanted know what happens if we replace the protons with an anti-electron (positron) considering the hypothetical case where positrons are stable for the same amount of time as the protons.

scythe327 said:
TL;DR Summary: What would be the measurable changes in the properties of the atom except mass ,if positrons are present in the place of protons(considering the hypothetical case that positrons are stable) and if so what are the changes and also is it really possible to create such hypothetical atom in real world.

I was really moved by CERN's youtube channel and it got me curious about the particles like electrons and protons, I love symmetry in nature and was not a huge fan of proton being nearly 2000 times the mass of electron possessing the same charge (Not that my opinion matters),I did some reading and found out about the quarks and virtual photons interactions that gives protons its charge , as i mentioned earlier , the love for symmetry made me wonder
we could develop a novel atomic model that suggests the possibility of creating an atom with protons and electrons having equal masses. In this model, we propose utilizing anti-electrons (positrons) as the "protons" in the atom, which share the same mass as electrons but possess a positive charge.

By considering this hypothetical scenario, where the masses of protons and electrons are equal, I envision significant implications for energy and entropy within the system. This concept is rooted in the notion that lower mass particles may result in lower entropy, potentially leading to enhanced efficiency and novel behaviors within the atom.

I do know that mass and entropy are not directly related but I wanted know what happens if we replace the protons with an anti-electron (positron) considering the hypothetical case where positrons are stable for the same amount of time as the protons.
If achieved by what factor will a 1 cm^3 of resulted material be comparable to the normal (proton- electron) in terms of mass.

You can't have positrons that mass the same as protons, so you can't try to put them in the nucleus.

I think what you're grappling toward is bog-standard antimatter.: anti-protons in the nucleus, surrounded by positron orbitals.

(Look past the quaint oldy-timey "electrons in orbits" model...)

scythe327
scythe327 said:
TL;DR Summary: What would be the measurable changes in the properties of the atom except mass ,if positrons are present in the place of protons(considering the hypothetical case that positrons are stable) and if so what are the changes and also is it really possible to create such hypothetical atom in real world.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Positronium

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Antihydrogen

The positron is as stable as its anti-particle, the electron.

Demystifier and ohwilleke
You need nuclear forces to create a nucleus. A positron does not feel them so this is not a realistic idea.

DaveC426913 said:
You can't have positrons that mass the same as protons, so you can't try to put them in the nucleus.

I think what you're grappling toward is bog-standard antimatter.: anti-protons in the nucleus, surrounded by positron orbitals.
Thank you for the reply , this is my first thread ,I wanted to know what happens to the electrons that are in orbitals around the new nucleus (positrons+nutrons) , how will the electron react to the change in the mass of the nucleus ,since the positron will have the same charge so the over all electronic interactions will remain the same.

scythe327 said:
Thank you for the reply , this is my first thread ,I wanted to know what happens to the electrons that are in orbitals around the new nucleus (positrons+nutrons) , how will the electron react to the change in the mass of the nucleus ,since the positron will have the same charge so the over all electronic interactions will remain the same.
As in your other thread, the proton and neutron are composed of three quarks each and exhibit the strong nuclear force, allowing them to form a nucleus. The positron does not exhibit the strong nuclear force: it's an anti-electron and interacts only electromagnetically.

ohwilleke and scythe327
Frabjous said:
You need nuclear forces to create a nucleus. A positron does not feel them so this is not a realistic idea.
ohhhhhhh....yah now i get it , thank you for the reply, this helped a lot , but hypothetically considering that those interactions are feasible would the change in the mass of the new nucleus(positron +neutrons) affects its stability ,chemical properties and orbitals of electrons ?

ohhhhhhh....yah now i get it , thank you for the reply, this helped a lot , but hypothetically considering that those interactions are feasible would the change in the mass of the new nucleus(positron +neutrons) affects its stability ,chemical properties and orbitals of electrons ?

scythe327 said:
PeroK said:
The positron does not exhibit the strong nuclear force
...hypothetically considering that those interactions are feasible...
You're asking what would happen if we throw away the laws of physics we know and substitute made-up ones.

The standard answer for that is: Unicorns. You'd get unicorns.

If we can make up laws to suit our desires, then why wouldn't we have unicorns?

phinds and ohwilleke
scythe327 said:
hypothetically considering that those interactions are feasible would the change in the mass of the new nucleus(positron +neutrons) affects its stability ,chemical properties and orbitals of electrons ?
As @DaveC426913 has pointed out, you can't hypothesize something that violates the laws of physics.

The reference on positronium already given has a good overview of what an electron-positron bound system is like. It is not like "an atom with a positron instead of a proton". So if what you were looking for was "an atom with a positron instead of a proton", then there is no such thing: it can't exist.

And with that, this thread is closed.

Bystander and PeroK

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