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Re: starship-design: antimatter fountain: popsci article

On Fri, 18 Jul 1997 00:42:22 -0400 (EDT) KellySt@aol.com writes:
>In a message dated 7/14/97 12:24:48 PM, bakelaar@injersey.com 
>>it sounds like science fiction: a fountain of antmatter
>>spewing from the center of our galaxy. but that is just what
>>astronomers claim they have discovered, using nasa's compton
>>gamma ray observatory satellite. 
>>launched into eart orbit six years ago, the observatory 
>>monitors the heavens for emissions of gamma rays. in april,
>>a research team led by astronomers at northwestern univ. 
>>and the naval research lab. in washington announced that the
>>observatory had foudn gamma rays emanating from a fountain-
>>shaped region that appears to originate at the milky way's
>>center. the high energy gammy-ray emissions were measured
>>at 511,000 electron volts - precisely the energy produced
>>when positrons (the antiparticles of electrons) are 
>>annihilated by collisions with normal matter. "its an 
>>unmistakable signature of the annihilation" says charles
>>dermer, a theorist at the navy lab who is helping to 
>>interpret the findings. 
>>what could be generating the positrons? on earth, positrons
>>are produced by the decay of certain radioactive isotopes
>>but are quickly destroyed when they collide. dermer and 
>>colleague jeff skibo point out that positrons are also
>>produced by supernovas, explosions of massive stars. 
>>successions of supernovas at the milky way's center could
>>have sent a fountain of hot gases, mixed with positrons,
>>shooting high above the galactic plane. mingling with the
>>hot gad would destroy the positrons and produce the observed
>>gamma rays, astronomers say.
>>however, other scientists have proposed a different source for
>>the positrons: one or more black holes believed to exist at 
>>the galaxy's center.
>>by andrew chaikin
>>so guys, what do you think of this? id like to hear
>>what you think... if its true or not, if they got anything
>>wrong... etc etc.
>Sounds likely.  We expected to find a big blackholes in the galactic 
> Mater geting sucked in and other effects can produce antimatter.  
>that its that rich a source thou.
Fascinating.  This raises my hopes for finding a simple, relatively
inexpensive way to generate antimatter for our own use.   Perhaps nuclear
reactions in the presence of an artificial hypermass?  HMMMM!!  :)