magnet deflecting charged particles, logical, but fictional problem.

Jul 2011
20
0
An alien civilization has crossed the galaxy to invade the Earth and enslave humanity, again. Their attacks have been successful so far because their assault troops are equipped with handheld weapons that project beams of charged particles (protons & electrons) at very high speeds, able to melt or vaporize solid objects on contact. To counter this frightening weapon, the Earth Defense Force has developed a super-strength bar magnet that can be attached to a human soldier's helmet or weapon, so that its magnetic field will stop or deflect the charged particles.

in order for the magnet to counter a beam being fired at a soldier from directly in front, how should the bar magnet be oriented?
Should the N or the S pole be pointing directly forward?
Or should it be vertical, and if so, should the N or the S pole point upward?
Or won't this work at all?

Here is what I think, the magnet should be placed on the soldiers helmet. when using the right hand rule, point the bar magnet with North away from the soldier and facing the oncoming particles. This would make the particles spiral in front of the soldier and around the bar magnet, according to the right hand rule. Please elaborate, if I'm well off, I've thought of many ideas this is the best one I could come up with.
 
Dec 2009
209
121
How about ....

An alien civilization has crossed the galaxy to invade the Earth and enslave humanity, again. Their attacks have been successful so far because their assault troops are equipped with handheld weapons that project beams of charged particles (protons & electrons) at very high speeds, able to melt or vaporize solid objects on contact. To counter this frightening weapon, the Earth Defense Force has developed a super-strength bar magnet that can be attached to a human soldier's helmet or weapon, so that its magnetic field will stop or deflect the charged particles.

in order for the magnet to counter a beam being fired at a soldier from directly in front, how should the bar magnet be oriented?
Should the N or the S pole be pointing directly forward?
Or should it be vertical, and if so, should the N or the S pole point upward?
Or won't this work at all?

Here is what I think, the magnet should be placed on the soldiers helmet. when using the right hand rule, point the bar magnet with North away from the soldier and facing the oncoming particles. This would make the particles spiral in front of the soldier and around the bar magnet, according to the right hand rule. Please elaborate, if I'm well off, I've thought of many ideas this is the best one I could come up with.
The thing with having the N side facing the incoming beam of charged particles is if it happens to be exactly parallel to a set of magnetic field lines, it/they will simply keep moving in and "destroy" the magnet.

They do not stop and just spiral in space. They will only spiral around a magnetic field line if they come in at a slightly off angle direction, and even then they will spiral in and along a field line and still come into contact with the magnet.

You need to have the field lines at a right angle to the charged particles. So maybe with the N on top and the S side on the bottom. In other words, have the N to S magnet standing like the soldier is doing.

This will deflect charged particles of one type off to the left of the soldier and particles of the other type to the right. Either way if the magnet is strong enough, the field lines should be able to protect the soldier by deflecting particles to his/her right or left.

When using the right hand rule dealing with B field lines, instead wrap your fingers (right or left hand, since you have positive and negative charges) around the way a directed field line would conform over the particle if hit. So if the field lines are pointing upward, an incoming particle would "take" a field line and try and "bend" it around itself in a counter-clockwise manner; like a broken elastic band with little arrows on it would do if a rock were thrown into it. The rubber "band-strand" would conform over the rock and now just look at the arrows as the band encircles the rock; wrap your fingers around following the arrows. Now point your thumb in the natural direction and that is the direction one type of charged particle would be deflected; the other type in the other direction. Both directions would be either to the soldier's right or left saving him/her from certain annihilation.

Many Smiles,
Craig
 
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Jul 2011
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Awesome, I think I understand this better now, especially using the right hand rule.