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Could ultra high-energy cosmic rays be the result of matter-antimatter collision?

  1. May 15, 2007 #1
    Could ultra high-energy cosmic rays be the result of matter-antimatter collision?

    What would be a unique antimatter-matter anihilation signature should say a 10 gram rock of antimatter were to collide into a meteor?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. May 17, 2007 #2

    pervect

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    I think cosmic rays are too energetic to be formed in such a manner.

    See for instance http://imagine.gsfc.nasa.gov/docs/features/topics/snr_group/cosmic_rays.html

    10^21 electron volts!

    Matter-antimatter annhilation will yield most of the energy in pions, some charged, some uncharged. You'll get much lower energies, I'm sure (a proton mass is only 1 Gev which is an upper limit). Cosmic rays can have about 12 orders of magnitude more energy than this.

    Cosmic rays are nuclei, protons, or electrons (see above), apparently mostly protons (from the above URL) and not pions. There will also be some x-rays in matter-antimatter annhilation from the electron-positron annhiliation.
     
    Last edited: May 17, 2007
  4. May 30, 2007 #3
    I was thinking along the lines of say 1 kg of antimatter colliding with say 500g of matter.
     
  5. May 30, 2007 #4

    Wallace

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    To put that in perspective that is ~100 Joules, roughly the energy of a baseball traveling at 120 km/h (or ~ 80 Miles/hr) :surprised :surprised :surprised

    Remember that this thing is probably a proton or something of similar mass. It's just mind blowing :smile:
     
    Last edited: May 30, 2007
  6. May 30, 2007 #5

    Wallace

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    But each annihilation event is from one subatomic matter particle meeting one subatomic anti-matter particle giving of a number of high energy particles as a result. The more matter and anti-matter particle you annihilate the more high energy particles you produce, but they won't have any more energy.
     
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