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Lorentz force and cosmic rays

  1. Nov 27, 2008 #1
    I am trying to calculate the strength of the magnetic field ( in teslas ) that would be needed to deflect cosmic rays going about 99% the speed of light.

    using the lorents force

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


    I replaced force with mass times acceleration

    I canceled the cross product because for this case pretend that the cosmic ray hits the magnetic field perpendicularly(eliminating the cross product)

    the variable E is also canceled because I am not applying an electric force

    so I end up with B= (mass times accleration) divided by (the charge in coloumbs times the velocity (99% the speed of light))

    but correct me if I am wrong. I have the accleration of cosmic rays to be 10,000 m/s squared until it reaches its maximum speed

    but because I am dividing by the spped of light(almost)

    I end up with a (insert a huge decimal number here) Teslas

    which must be incorrect because it would take many teslas to deflect cosmioc rays


    PLEASE CORRECT ME

    Thanks.
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Nov 28, 2008 #2
    By how much are you trying to deflect them?
    Because cosmic rays can travel a LONG way in your average magnetic field without being significantly reflected. So if you are trying to change their direction a large amount in a short distance, then yes you should be expecting a very large magnetic field to be required.
     
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