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Author Topic: Electron Disintegration Field?  (Read 4647 times)

Offline Voxx

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Electron Disintegration Field?
« on: 22/06/2012 01:40:37 »
Alright, another strange and most likely laughable theory by Voxx.  Would it be feasible for a high voltage discharge of electrons to melt, disintegrate or change the course of projectiles.  If they are not in fact insulated, which I believe that a strong enough charge can even affect an insulated projectile.  (Like rubber bullets)

Anyone have a more enlightened understanding of the concept and physics behind it?


 

Offline CliffordK

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #1 on: 22/06/2012 10:58:52 »
Say you could create a plasma with an electronic arc, like electric welding.  It would be difficult to build and maintain a wide arc, but rather for most practical purposes the arc would be relatively focal.

A bullet would not be grounded, and thus would not be an end point for the arc.  It would have to be destroyed by heat alone.

One of the issues is that bullets travel 600 to 5000 feet per second (180 to 1500 meters per second).  Depending on the width of the plasma field, the bullet would spend a very short time in the arc.  I'm doubtful that the bullet would be damaged much by say 1/10,000 of a second exposure to a very intense heat.
 

Offline evan_au

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #2 on: 22/06/2012 14:13:23 »
Electrons moving at almost the speed of light create a near-impenetrable electric field that will change the course of any charged object (like the electrons in a bullet).

Surrounding yourself by a source of such relativistic electrons would provide a good shield against bullets - the hardest part is manipulating the location and path of these high-speed charged particles.

Silicon dioxide is a good, cheap source of electrons, which are conveniently localised within the covalent bonds of the SiO2 molecule for easy transport. SiO2 can be easily obtained from open-cut mines on beaches or deserts.

Bullets, whether conducting, insulators, magnetic or superconductors, on close approach to the SiO2 are affected by intense electric fields, diverting and slowing their flight. By Newton's law, the SiO2 feels an equal and opposite force, so it needs to be anchored in some way. Fortunately, more SiO2 is able to fulfill this function.

To keep the silicon dioxide grains where you want them, ready for use on any incoming bullets, you can pack them in economical hessian sacks, and stack them near the vital target that you wish to protect.

Unfortunately, the relativistic electric field generator tends to be rather heavy, so it's best used on fixed installations, rather than for portable applications. But I think this could produce one of the cheapest and most effective bulletproof shields: the sandbag.
 

Offline JP

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #3 on: 22/06/2012 14:20:21 »
To expand on what Clifford said, a big problem with a beam of electrons is that its very hard to get it to go where you want.  Electrons repel each other, so keeping them bunched together in a beam is tough: you can use magnets to do so, but then you'd have to have a chain of magnets lined up all the way to the bullet.  Electrons also interact strongly with air, so if you send it through the air, the beam will lose tons of electrons to the air. 

The other problem is that there's no reason to use electrons when it would be easier to shoot a high powered laser beam at the bullet to melt it.  This is also beyond our current technology (at least for fast moving bullets that are far away), but its still far more practical than using electrons. 
 

Offline Voxx

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #4 on: 22/06/2012 14:49:17 »
To expand on what Clifford said, a big problem with a beam of electrons is that its very hard to get it to go where you want.  Electrons repel each other, so keeping them bunched together in a beam is tough: you can use magnets to do so, but then you'd have to have a chain of magnets lined up all the way to the bullet.  Electrons also interact strongly with air, so if you send it through the air, the beam will lose tons of electrons to the air. 

The other problem is that there's no reason to use electrons when it would be easier to shoot a high powered laser beam at the bullet to melt it.  This is also beyond our current technology (at least for fast moving bullets that are far away), but its still far more practical than using electrons.

Interesting, is there any way to ionize the air to create a more stable environment for the electrons to path along?
 

Offline JP

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #5 on: 22/06/2012 14:55:57 »
One way is to fire a high powered laser first, which ionizes the air, for example: http://iopscience.iop.org/1367-2630/4/1/361/fulltext/

You'd still have the problem that Clifford mentioned that the bullet isn't grounded, so its not clear that it would be easy to get the current to flow to it. 

Plus, if you're firing a high powered laser at the bullet, you might as well just melt it with the laser.
 

Offline Voxx

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #6 on: 22/06/2012 15:03:22 »
Electrons moving at almost the speed of light create a near-impenetrable electric field that will change the course of any charged object (like the electrons in a bullet).

Surrounding yourself by a source of such relativistic electrons would provide a good shield against bullets - the hardest part is manipulating the location and path of these high-speed charged particles.

Silicon dioxide is a good, cheap source of electrons, which are conveniently localised within the covalent bonds of the SiO2 molecule for easy transport. SiO2 can be easily obtained from open-cut mines on beaches or deserts.

Bullets, whether conducting, insulators, magnetic or superconductors, on close approach to the SiO2 are affected by intense electric fields, diverting and slowing their flight. By Newton's law, the SiO2 feels an equal and opposite force, so it needs to be anchored in some way. Fortunately, more SiO2 is able to fulfill this function.

To keep the silicon dioxide grains where you want them, ready for use on any incoming bullets, you can pack them in economical hessian sacks, and stack them near the vital target that you wish to protect.

Unfortunately, the relativistic electric field generator tends to be rather heavy, so it's best used on fixed installations, rather than for portable applications. But I think this could produce one of the cheapest and most effective bulletproof shields: the sandbag.

Wouldn't this have a positive or negative effect on diamagnetic, paramagnetic and ferromagnetic materials?
 

Offline Voxx

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #7 on: 22/06/2012 15:05:04 »
One way is to fire a high powered laser first, which ionizes the air, for example: http://iopscience.iop.org/1367-2630/4/1/361/fulltext/

You'd still have the problem that Clifford mentioned that the bullet isn't grounded, so its not clear that it would be easy to get the current to flow to it. 

Plus, if you're firing a high powered laser at the bullet, you might as well just melt it with the laser.

Is a laser the only way to ionize a path for the electrons?  Also, what is the cause of electron pathing?
 

Offline Voxx

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #8 on: 22/06/2012 21:01:47 »
Hmm, I just read the link you posted JP and found it quite interesting.

So correct me if I'm wrong, but UV lighting creates an ionized path?  Is there natural UV lighting all around us?  Even at night?
 

Offline evan_au

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #9 on: 22/06/2012 22:19:37 »
There is such a mechanism as you describe: It's called lightning, and contains an intense burst of current at 30,000 Amps or more.

Before lightning can occur, you must first establish an electric field of around 1 Million volts per metre (or yard), which would be most hazardous for the people nearest the electric field generator. You may be able to reduce this voltage with a laser, but lasers carry their own risks.

As well as sufficient voltage, you must also build up enough electric charge to drive the high currents. The best high-voltage laboratories have problems simulating the intensity of direct lightning strikes.

Lightning could burn out electronics in an anti-aircraft shell, and perhaps detonate the charge in an explosive shell, but because lightning only lasts a very short time (like 10-30 microseconds) it mostly does cosmetic damage to solid metal or insulating objects like bullets.

If an attacker was aware that their bullets would be used in a lightning-prone area, it would be fairly easy to ensure that the current path goes around the sensitive areas, rather than through them. Airplanes are designed this way, and contain a lot of electronics; I have seen an aircraft struck by lightning on takeoff, and the plane continued no no apparent ill effects.
 

Offline evan_au

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #10 on: 22/06/2012 22:29:51 »
I can confirm that diamagnetic, paramagnetic and ferromagnetic bullets are all effectively shielded by SiO2-filled sandbags.
The military has been researching this technology for quite a few years, and I have seen photos of some deployments.
 

Offline Voxx

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #11 on: 23/06/2012 04:10:28 »
Interesting, thank you for your input evan_au.

So if you could generate enough electrons as a lightning strike, have it last more than 10-30 microseconds and get it to strike the projectile, it would in "theory" destroy the object.

A lot of ifs and as of our technology, "that we know of" we can not produce as of yet?  Correct?
 

Offline evan_au

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #12 on: 25/06/2012 10:24:46 »
Cosmic rays also ionise the air - these are atomic nuclei traveling at almost the speed of light. If one of these went through a charged thundercloud it could indeed trigger lightning.

You could in principle build an accelerator which could fire atomic nuclei through the air at high energy, and use this to guide a man-made lightning bolt. As always, there are some challenges:
  • Since a bullet is usually not sitting on the ground, you need to hit it from another direction with another simultaneous ion beam, backed by a high voltage source of opposite polarity, in order for the lightning to go somewhere
  • The higher-power cosmic rays have far more power than the LHC can produce
  • The LHC is not exactly portable (nor is the power station to drive it)
  • You need a "window" that will separate the high vacuum inside the accelerator from the air outside, without absorbing too much energy from the particles.
  • Once a subatomic particle hits the air, it produces a shower of subatomic particles which continues in the same general direction, but spreads out, so it is more like a shotgun than a rifle.
Possible, but challenging.
 

Offline JP

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #13 on: 25/06/2012 18:40:51 »
Are you asking about whether its practical or whether its possible, Voxx?  It's theoretically possible to build a "lightning gun."  But it's impractical and will probably never get built in reality, since there are other alternatives (conventional projectiles, lasers) which are much easier to build and control.
 

Offline CZARCAR

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #14 on: 26/06/2012 00:48:30 »
whats a resistor?
 

Offline Voxx

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #15 on: 16/07/2012 05:33:28 »
Are you asking about whether its practical or whether its possible, Voxx?  It's theoretically possible to build a "lightning gun."  But it's impractical and will probably never get built in reality, since there are other alternatives (conventional projectiles, lasers) which are much easier to build and control.

Your post has been in que for a while now and I'm sorry for the late response.

To be quite honest I ask these questions as reference to a science fiction book I'm writing.  The main character can manipulate electrons, electromagnetic and magnetic fields.

So what I'm asking is if there was a projectile being targeted at this said character that they could discharge an electron surge that could either force it off trajectory or disintegrate it.

I would state this at the start of the thread, but the amount of replies I get when talking science fiction on this forum turns quickly to zero once I so much as mention the word science fiction.  Though, it does make sense coming from a purest science forum.
 

Offline JP

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #16 on: 16/07/2012 14:11:09 »
Well the problem with science fiction on a science forum is that we can answer what is possible with science, but anything is possible with fiction. 

A lightning bolt can travel along an ionized path in the air.  If you somehow ionized a path to a projectile then to the ground, you could fire a lightning bolt along it.  The damage to the projectile would depend on the material it was made of. 

A person being able to do that is pure fiction, since there is no scientific way for a person to generate and control electrons or ionize paths through the air at will.
 

Offline Voxx

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #17 on: 16/07/2012 16:47:31 »
Well the problem with science fiction on a science forum is that we can answer what is possible with science, but anything is possible with fiction. 

A lightning bolt can travel along an ionized path in the air.  If you somehow ionized a path to a projectile then to the ground, you could fire a lightning bolt along it.  The damage to the projectile would depend on the material it was made of. 

A person being able to do that is pure fiction, since there is no scientific way for a person to generate and control electrons or ionize paths through the air at will.

That's true, but it's called science fiction because there is hard science within the fiction.  Thank you for your input on my thread JP, your an avid poster on my topics and from what I can tell a well respected member on this forum.  The same goes for Clifford, Geezer and Evan, I'm glad I stumbled across Naked Science:D
 

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Re: Electron Disintegration Field?
« Reply #17 on: 16/07/2012 16:47:31 »

 

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