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Is building a particle accelerator legal ?

  1. Sep 23, 2009 #1


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    So apparently Michio Kaku built a 2.3-million-electron-volt particle accelerator in his parents' garage; once Harvard University found out about this they granted him admission.

    I'd like to go to Harvard.

    So if I were to build a particle accelerator would I be breaking any laws, or is it all good in the hood ?

    Note: I am Canadian.
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 23, 2009 #2
    not knowing the exact intricacies of building a particle accelerator from scratch(I assume it involves this thing called money, which mean lots of queen Beth's) what I do know is that not many laws could be broken building it. Laws can be broken when operating it. small difference I know, but a big one. to my knowledge PA's mostly work by magnetics timed perfectly and built to high specifications. there is no real problem with this, just a FCC(Canadian equivalent) permit away. You will be put on the warning watch list when(if?) you buy a whole ton of liquid helium.

  4. Sep 23, 2009 #3
    That cathode-ray television you used to have or still have accelerated particles...you've always been using particle accelerators, so you could probably build one without legal trouble (but as socrunningman said, depending on what your materials are, you might run into some trouble buying them).
  5. Sep 24, 2009 #4


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    Not particularly. People in the US have built and operated fusion reactors in their own homes and even a particle accelerator can be small enough for tabletop (as the earliest ones were). I think that socrunningman is right, the operation of the device may be restricted in terms of the emissions. You may want to read up on the relevant laws from the equivalent of the FCC to make sure that you properly shield your device.
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