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Gamma Ray Annihilation

  1. Nov 5, 2005 #1
    If we could produce the highest order of Gamma Ray energy of a single photon
    and bombarded an Atom with direct precision, Would the Atom be Annihilated?

    If the Atom is Annihilated then would the release of Energy of the Atom be greater than the Single High Energy Gamma Photon?

    Assume that we can emit the Highest order of Gamma Ray on a Single Photon increment with the up most precision to any place on the Atom.

    It seems (Precision) is the Holy Grail.

    Now, What can we do with the Highest order coherent Gamma Ray Beam emitter, besides the use of weapons, Strictly Scientific for the benifits of Energy utilization.
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 5, 2005 #2


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    With a sufficiently high gamma ray, one might knock out a neutron, or possibly a proton, but I have not heard of a gamma-proton reaction.

    The atom would not be annihilated however.

    Using a gamma-ray emitter would not be practical for general energy production - although photoneutron sources (startup sources) have been used as sources of neutrons in first cores of commercial nuclear reactors, since there are strong sources neutrons from transuranics in a fresh core.
  4. Nov 7, 2005 #3


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    Let me second Astronucs answer. You aren't going to annihilate entire atoms or nuclei
    with a gamma ray - no matter how precise you hit with it. As Astronuc stated, you may
    dislodge a single neutron.
    However, the total binding energy of a nucleus is way, way beyond the energy of anything
    classed as a gamma ray.
    Gamma ray energies are on the order of the transitions between energy levels in the
    nucleus. These transitions energies are way, way less than the total.
    I don't see any mechanism that this scheme would lead to net energy production.
    Dr. Gregory Greenman
  5. Nov 7, 2005 #4
    Thanks Dr. Greenman.

    I have some questions, Is there a limit on how much energy that a Gamma Ray Photon can have? or has Science found out yet?

    I have read that there is no theoretical limit to a Gamma Ray Photons Energy.

    See: http://www.newton.dep.anl.gov/askasci/phy00/phy00466.htm

    Can a Gamma Ray Photon have more Energy than an Atom?
    If so then how would the Atom react to such an intense bombardment of Energy?
    Last edited: Nov 7, 2005
  6. Nov 8, 2005 #5
    How could you produce a gamma photon with that much energy?
  7. Nov 8, 2005 #6


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    Ostensibly, to produce a gamma ray of such energy requires a charged particle of similar energy and an intense magnetic field. However, there may be a practical limit and maximum gamma ray energy, because such energy would likely be manifest in a particle rather than gamma ray.

    This is an area where sufficient modeling does not exist.
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