Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Question about collision

  1. Feb 10, 2014 #1
    I was wondering what happens when sub-atomic particles collide together. Could the energy created from this event cause other sub-atomic particles to be drawn in? If so would there be a second explosion from too much mass collecting in one small space?
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Feb 10, 2014 #2

    Simon Bridge

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member
    2016 Award

    Welcome to PF;
    On the subatomic scale, the term "collision" is used very loosely and we more correctly talk about "interactions".
    It's most commonly used in the context of particle beams, as in the LHC, where two streams of, say, protons, are directed head-on at each other. But it would help to know what situation you are thinking of because there are so many.

    So - to your questions:

    1. Could the energy created from this event cause other sub-atomic particles to be drawn in?
    The energy from a collision would generally result in more particles being created - the resulting interactions tend to result in other particles being thrown away from the place the "collision" took place in.

    2. If so would there be a second explosion from too much mass collecting in one small space?
    Colliding beams often produce unstable particles which, themselves, decay - this could be thought of as a "second explosion".

    But perhaps what you really want to know is if colliding beams could produce a black hole or an atomic bomb?
     
  4. Feb 10, 2014 #3
    Thank you for the welcoming.

    So when the "collision"/ interactions happen they start to randomly create more particles? I was also wondering if there is a force or anything man made that would attract particles together much like a black hole would?

    Is it possible for particles to be pulled in on each other so densely that they cause an explosion?
     
  5. Feb 10, 2014 #4

    Simon Bridge

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member
    2016 Award

    Depends on the situation - but this is what they do in CERN: collide two beams and study the particles that come off.

    "random" is not a good description of what happens.

    Depends if you think gravity can be "man-made". There is nothing special about the attraction of a black hole.

    There are four fundamental interactions - any may have an attractive effect.
    In the lab we tend to exploit the electromagnetic one the most. The others are gravitational, strong nuclear, and, weak nuclear.

    Yes. This is how nuclear bombs work - high explosive is used to drive masses of fissionable material close together with a lot of extra neutrons to trigger a chain reaction.

    I have a feeling this is not what you are thinking of - don't dance around the question you really want to ask: just ask it.
     
  6. Feb 11, 2014 #5
    Thank you for your help thus far.

    I am writing a book and I want to learn about sub atomic particles and their behavior under certain situations. I need the story to be as spot on as possible. I am also very interested in this type of science.

    Which question do you think I am bouncing around? Perhaps it's what I need to be asking instead.
     
  7. Feb 11, 2014 #6

    Simon Bridge

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member
    2016 Award

    You are writing a SF novel?

    You appear to have a particular idea of what you want to happen in the book - so why not ask about that?
    Perhaps you have two people shooting particle beams at each other, the beams hit each other and something dramatic happens? (But you told us never to cross the beams!)

    Note: to be spot on, you want to talk about colliding beams rather than particles.
    On the scale of individual particles it is not clear what is meant by a collision - they don't even have anything resembling a classical surface like, say, a billiard ball or hockey puck does.
     
  8. Feb 11, 2014 #7
    In my story there is teleportation. I describe it working by breaking down the subject being transported to it's sub-atomic particles and scans them to be reconstructed at the second location. I was saying that the device pulls randomly disappearing and reappearing particles to the second location. The original subject matter then is drawn elsewhere in the universe to a high magnetic field and high energy output. I was going to say the LHC is one of those locations and the other is the sun. I needed to know if it could make enough sense to suspend belief that those particles could be drawn into that area from the "collision" of those beams.
     
  9. Feb 11, 2014 #8

    Simon Bridge

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper
    Gold Member
    2016 Award

    No. None of that makes sense at all.

    The best way to handle a SF at this level is to pick one law to break ... and introduce some "unobtanium" to do it with.

    You could have the teleporter convert the mass of the subject into a pulse of energy, encoded with reassembly information, that gets beamed at a receiver, then channeled into the reassembly device.

    Using this to duplicate people may be possible but impractical because of the huge amount of energy involved (E=mc^2).

    The law you are breaking involves total conversion of matter, basically by wishing it were so.
    It gives you lightspeed transport - but no faster - and you still have the law of conservation of momentum to contend with so if you beam down to a planets surface from orbit - better make sure it's geostationary (even then there's an angular momentum difference.)

    Regular users don't know how the technology works but there may be noticable effects that will add flavour to the story.

    There are a lot of teleportation schemes so the main thing to do first is decide how it is important to the story, then find a scheme that either reinforces the story or, at least, interferes least with it. Like why is it important to the story that the original matter is drawn elsewhere? Maybe it can just be stored someplace and recycled for when they need to reconstitute an incoming traveller? Everyone ends up with everyone elses atoms.
     
Know someone interested in this topic? Share this thread via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook