Program was touted publicly, then came official gag order

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posted on Jan, 14 2013 @ 12:53 AM
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Air Force pursuing antimatter weapons / Program was touted publicly, then came official gag order

Keay Davidson, Chronicle Science Writer

Published 4:00 am, Monday, October 4, 2004



Read more: www.sfgate.com...

Read more: www.sfgate.com...

The U.S. Air Force is quietly spending millions of dollars investigating ways to use a radical power source -- antimatter, the eerie "mirror" of ordinary matter -- in future weapons.

The most powerful potential energy source presently thought to be available to humanity, antimatter is a term normally heard in science-fiction films and TV shows, whose heroes fly "antimatter-powered spaceships" and do battle with "antimatter guns."

But antimatter itself isn't fiction; it actually exists and has been intensively studied by physicists since the 1930s. In a sense, matter and antimatter are the yin and yang of reality: Every type of subatomic particle has its antimatter counterpart. But when matter and antimatter collide, they annihilate each other in an immense burst of energy.

During the Cold War, the Air Force funded numerous scientific studies of the basic physics of antimatter. With the knowledge gained, some Air Force insiders are beginning to think seriously about potential military uses -- for example, antimatter bombs small enough to hold in one's hand, and antimatter engines for 24/7 surveillance aircraft.

More cataclysmic possible uses include a new generation of super weapons -- either pure antimatter bombs or antimatter-triggered nuclear weapons; the former wouldn't emit radioactive fallout. Another possibility is antimatter- powered "electromagnetic pulse"


Read more: www.sfgate.com...


Source

There is also the issue of hand held weapons and in the case of a Positron gun....

Status of an R&D project of a positron gun at “Horia Hulubei” NIPNE Bucharest

I tried and tried but could not find a way around the $35.95 to actually look at this research


Any thoughts?

edit on 14-1-2013 by Kashai because: added content




posted on Jan, 14 2013 @ 10:27 AM
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reply to post by Kashai
 


My understanding is that it's very expensive and slow moving to produce antimatter, and that there is very little antimatter actually in storage at present.

I know so little about particle physics to begin with, so I defer to others who may know better. But to the best of my knowledge positrons and the like are not easily come by & require a great deal of energy to produce. Storage, as I understand, is another problem, requiring a complex of vast & expensive hardware/components.

This says nothing about the ethics of developing antimatter weapons to begin with. Then again, the development of the atom bomb passed.



posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 10:12 PM
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reply to post by Kovenov
 


All things being equal you are correct so under the circumstances, so why would the US cover up an effort that suggest such technology is possible?



posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 10:17 PM
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Because without magnetic containment the antimatter is impossible to keep stable, seeing as how we live in matter land.

Which means ANY facility.... engine... or weapon that loses its ability to magneticly contain this fuel instantly releases all its potential in giant explosion. Simply knowing you need to disrupt power is a massive disadvantage for the technology.



posted on Jan, 15 2013 @ 11:52 PM
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The problem with containment is that the more antimatter one collects, the stronger the containment field needs to be.

A drop of anti-matter could effectively get us to the nearest star and back, it would be enough energy to power a city like New York for several years. According to certain standards it would take the gross GNP of the United States for a year to produce one drop of antimatter (currently).

That does not make it impossible, given the cooperation of many countries.

Any thoughts?





 
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