2
$\begingroup$

I have a superhuman character with the ability to fire tightly packed "bullets" composed of electrons at very high velocity and over a distance, say a few meters at a minimum.

I know that normally electrons would repel each other due to them having the same charge, but is there any way this could work with current physics? I was thinking that maybe the character created some kind of positively charged magnetic field that held the electrons in place, but I'm open to suggestions.

Also, how could the character generate the required power to do this?

$\endgroup$
  • $\begingroup$ Electron beams are, in fact, a current technology. One application is electron beam welding. A quick jaunt through Google will show you other, existing applications. $\endgroup$ – JBH Jan 5 '18 at 23:53
  • $\begingroup$ Short of charge suppression which involves extremely exotic physics of a highly speculative kind, the only known way of stopping electron charges repelling is a neutral particle beam. This consists of both electrons and protons & their charges cancel each other out. Now you have neutral particle "bullets". More workable, still with problems of operating in an atmosphere. Otherwise the electron "bullets" would have to have ultrarelativistic velocity. moving so close to lightspeed that they don't disperse over a few metres. Major power generation problems though. $\endgroup$ – a4android Jan 6 '18 at 1:08
3
$\begingroup$

An old-fashioned CRT TV or monitor does this (as already mentioned), but in vacuum and not for a very long range. Beta-radiation is it, too.

But isn't it easier for your electric superhero to accelerate small magnetic pieces of metal as bullets? So to speak, a human Gauss gun or rail gun.

| improve this answer | |
$\endgroup$
2
$\begingroup$

A stream of electrons would be beta radiation.

Betas are charged particles so they interact easily with the electrons of any matter, and thus are easily shielded. The common example is a piece of paper, in industrial use a thin layer of plastic as in a face shield is all that is needed to provide beta shielding.

Unless your super is shooting enough beta radiation at a high enough energy level (speed) to impart a lot of energy into his targets, you could beat him by wearing clothes, or throwing a tarp on him.

As for maintaining cohesion, as charged particles, electrons can be contained and directed via magnetic fields. Control of electric/magnetic fields would seem like the most likely means of firing these "bullets", which would also allow him to hold the electrons together for a short distance beyond which he can manipulate the fields.

The comics are full of well known characters with the ability to control electricity or magnetism, so read up for some ideas. Many of them can obtain power and energy by feeding off of the electrical grid or other environmental electric/magnetic fields.

| improve this answer | |
$\endgroup$

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.