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Old Nov 23rd 2013, 04:53 PM   #1
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particle accellerator

hi guys can any one tell me is it possible to make any helium isotope gas with a particle accelerator and how much would be able to be produced as its listed on some us governments website as how to produce helium
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Old Nov 26th 2013, 12:01 PM   #2
MBW
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Most helium (on the Earth) is created via nuclear fission.

Many radioactive elements release alpha particles when they decay.
Alpha particles are a pair of protons bound to a pair of neutrons, which is also what forms the nucleus of a helium atom, so just add a couple of electrons (which are readily available from any good hardware store) and viola, helium.

I might guess that the particle accelerator could be used to encourage the break up of the radioactive elements, and thus increase the rate of release of alpha particles.

(Most helium off the Earth is made in stars via nuclear fusion, with some primordial helium made in the big bang).

Note that Helium is currently being used much faster than it is being produced,
It has (fairly seriously) been suggested that helium mining might become an economically viable reason to return to the Moon.

Last edited by MBW; Nov 26th 2013 at 12:04 PM.
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