Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Imaginary Conversation: Antimatter

The following conversation is fictitious. Any resemblance to living persons is purely coincidental.





Dr. Wu: Did you hear? CERN scientists just published an article that they have trapped antimatter for over 16 minutes.
Dr. Bernard: Yes. They confined antihydrogen for 1000 seconds. Incredible. This will bring us closer to studying and understanding the laws of nature and physics.
Dr. Wu: Whatever happened to America's Super Collider that they were building in Texas?
Dr. Bernard: The project was scrapped in 1993 due to budget cuts.
Dr. Wu: But they already built over $1 billion worth of infrastructure.
Dr. Bernard: Yes. It would have been the world's largest particle accelerator, 3 times as big as the Hadron Collider in Europe.
Dr. Wu: It would have been such a great contribution to science.
Dr. Bernard: About $8 billion dollars to complete it was too much, especially since antimatter cannot be used as an energy source or to make an antimatter bomb.
Dr. Wu: That was an entertaining book.
Dr. Bernard: Speculative fiction.
Dr. Wu: So, what have they been up to instead?
Dr. Bernard: Other than making movies? Advancing technology based on fireworks.
Dr. Wu: HA! That was a good invention, wasn't it?

16 comments:

  1. Ooh......

    I love the smell of irony in the morning.

    Irony?

    Yup - it's like goldeny or silvery but with iron instead.

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  2. If I had a billion dollars to waste...

    Wasn't the whole issue with the accelerators that they weren't sure what was going to happen when they got it up and running? And then, nothing really happened? I get the fascination with trying to figure out matter vs. antimatter but I'm not quite sure I understand what they are going to use the ability to create antimatter for. If it's not a viable source of energy, what is it good for? And as far as speculative fiction goes, how do we know that creating antimatter here on earth is affecting matter in another part of the universe?

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  3. I created a new biological being in my fridge once.
    Didn't cost me anything.

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  4. If I launched a study into the effects of fireworks in movies could I get at least the billion they started off with? I'd even make a movie about it after I was done.

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  5. I'm STILL waiting for those flying cars I was promised back in the 80s.
    I guess I'll just have to settle for Japanese sex robots.

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  6. @Alistair, lol. Good one. I like.
    Beats Napalm anytime.

    @Meg, antimatter exists naturally, the fascinating thing is where is it? This will allow for the study of medical applications, the PET scan already emits Positrons (antimatter) and if we can figure out how to harness and store it, it would solve our energy needs.

    @Meg, we can trap antimatter, but comments still can't be edited ;)

    @Sprite, scientific experiments do not belong in fridges. *cough* :)

    @VinnyC, the most expensive movie ever made. Things that go boom. Catchy title.

    @Al, some people are barely road safe in 2 dimensions, imagine getting out of those tickets. "Officer, he just appeared above me..."
    Are they making those yet?

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  7. So did they complete enough of the Texas collider that it could at least be converted into a giant skating rink?

    What I am hoping for is the development of Dilithium Crystals. Oh wait, that was "Star Trek".

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  8. @Robert, a billion dollar ice skating ring for Texans? Cheaper ways to exercise.

    If only we could find that elusive renewable energy source...speaking of, I am hoping for the teleporter and the replicator.

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  9. I dare you to tweet this post to Paris Hilton.

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  10. I believe that our society has reached the point of hopelessness. The only real question is how gracefully the end will come.

    In counterpoint Vaclav Havel, noted playwrite, poet and later politician, once wrote, "Isn't it the moment of most profound doubt that gives birth to new certainties? Perhaps hopelessness is the very soil that nourishes human hope; perhaps one could never find sense in life without first experiencing its absurdity."

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  11. @dbs, did you just call her antimatter?
    Ah, is that where it went? ;)

    @Laoch, I do hope you're wrong, but based on the ridiculous decisions that have been made lately...and continue to be made.

    There seems to be very little interest in ending the absurdity of it all. Havel, like his work. It'd be nice to see some insight in those who "lead" us.

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  12. It was formally home-made green marshmallow.

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  13. Informally? Alien? Was it? You made an alien didn't you?

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  14. We do know how to accelerate waste, don't we?

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  15. Jayne, succinct and to the point.
    Line of the day:)

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