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E=mc2 and anti-particles

  1. Jun 15, 2012 #1
    I have been doing research in e=mc2, and to release the energy , you have to get an anti-particle to collide with the particle equivalent to a specific value of energy.
    Now i want to know where do you get this anti-particle, or is it just theoretically described?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Jun 15, 2012 #2
    Fermilab (near Chicago) used to produce and store about 1 x 1011 antiprotons per hour before the Tevatron was shut down last year.
     
  4. Jun 15, 2012 #3

    mathman

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    Positrons (anti-electrons) are produced all the time in hospitals.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Positron_emission_tomography

    Also there are other processes which convert matter to energy, such as nuclear fission (reactors and bombs) and nuclear fusion (sun's energy).
     
  5. Jun 15, 2012 #4
    oh that's is pretty interesting, can anybody get an anti-proton if he had the equipment and knowledge?
     
  6. Jun 15, 2012 #5
  7. Jun 15, 2012 #6

    mfb

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    Positrons are light and quite easy to produce. Antiprotons are much harder. You need an accelerator of significant size (won't fit in your home) to accelerate particles up to ~6 billion electronvolts. If you shoot these particles on a fixed target, some antiprotons are produced.
    If you want to catch and control them, it gets trickier. Few accelerator complexes are capable of doing this - I know of Fermilab (just acceleration) and CERN (traps antiprotons at rest), and the FAIR project is built to trap antiprotons, too.
     
  8. Jun 16, 2012 #7
    Well, i see that we can make a lot of anti-matter, why don't people use this for electrical energy by taking advantage of e=mc2 .
     
  9. Jun 16, 2012 #8

    Vanadium 50

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    How much energy is produced in annihilating 100 billion antiprotons? What is the power for doing this every hour?
     
  10. Jun 16, 2012 #9
    So you are saying that we would make less energy than the energy that we put?
     
  11. Jun 16, 2012 #10

    mfb

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    You can get a lot of energy out of antimatter. But: You need at least the same amount of energy to produce the antimatter. This is a fundamental limit - even with 100% efficient production and annihilation, you could not use it as a power source.

    Theory would allow to use antimatter as a very compact energy storage. However, practical limitations forbid this: In real accelerators, the efficiency to generate antimatter is extremely bad. If you want to store it as neutral antimatter, the efficiency is lower than 0,01%, and I can give you this estimation without even looking up numbers because the efficiency is way lower than that.
     
  12. Jun 16, 2012 #11
    I see... It sounds unfortunate because if it had a high efficiency , it could make a huge impact in the industry.
     
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