New Petawatt Laser To Create Antimatter

Author
Aron Schatz
Posted
April 9, 2008
Views
2070
Tags Science

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All this talk about high energy lasers and antimatter plasma is just too good to be true. When do we finally get a warp field working?

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A laser pulse fired at a piece of material like aluminium briefly heats it to millions of degrees Celsius and raises its pressure to about 1 billion times that at sea level on Earth, similar to the extreme conditions inside gas giants and brown dwarfs. The experiments could help scientists learn how easily this exotic matter conducts electricity, which could shed light on the magnetic fields produced by the objects. The experiments could also help scientists better understand gamma-ray bursts. Some scientists say the extremely high temperatures present in gamma-ray bursts should lead to the production of antimatter, a phenomenon that might be replicated by the Texas Petawatt Laser. "It's surmised that we can actually create a small amount of matter-antimatter plasma in the lab with the petawatt laser," Ditmire says.

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