For quiet sometime now I’ve been stuck on one of the finer details of my world building. Namely that one of my characters is this world’s version of a pyromancer that, through the use of both the weak and strong force, as well as the electromagnetic force though to a lesser extent, create flames from the atmosphere.

The issue is I’m neither a chemist or a nuclear scientist, so I’d do not know what reaction, or reactions, my character can utilize.

As stated before hand, my character utilized both the weak and strong force respectively. Though his control and understanding of the electromagnetism is not as complete as the nuclear options. And when I mean ‘control’, I mean that my character can respectfully, control the rate of nuclear fission and decay, even force stable molecules and atoms apart; weaken and strengthen the strong force to induce both hot and cold fusion, though I’m still wondering if hot fusion is part of the weak force; and change EM fields and ions at a atomic level.

And finally, the flames themselves have to be

a) Look like fire or at least have a reaction that generates enough heat to have flames coming of of it.

b) Powerful and hot enough to damage a given target.

c) The reaction is preferably self sustaining, or at least as self sustaining a fire cast magically from a person be.

Lastly, the flames I’m imagining are less like lobbing fire balls and more akin to fire alchemy that is seen in Full Metal Alchemist Brotherhood.

Multiple possible reactions are also preferred, thank you.

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    $\begingroup$ Don't assume that every reader will know what FMAB is, or what the nature of its fire alchemy is. Using the strong or weak nuclear force to create fire is a bit like banging two bits of subcritical uranium together to stay warm. $\endgroup$ Commented Feb 16, 2020 at 13:40

1 Answer 1


Chemical Science

Fire requires three things to start. The first is heat, the second is fuel, and the third is oxygen. Additionally, there's a fourth component which keeps the fire going, this is the chain reaction of the existing fire to new source materials for the first three.

FMAB, also known as Full Metal Alchemist: Brotherhood, has a charcter (Lt. Col. Mustang) who does just that to manipulate fire. He adjusts the air to create adequate supplies of fuel (in the form of hydrogen gas) and oxygen. Then he snaps his fingers to create a spark, heat, and that promptly chain reacts to create the displays of pyromancy he's capable of. Do note that according to real physics the explosions he's known for making wouldn't actually be that strong unless he did something a bit fancy with the nitrogen in the air. However, as he frequently mentions that he only uses Hydrogen and Oxygen, the assumption is that he doesn't use the air's nitrogen.

Do note that there is a general rule when it comes to lighting things on fire is that if you haven't done so, it just means you're not using enough heat. In other words, all chemistry becomes fire chemistry as a certain temperature, so going over the entire field is immense, I'm just outlining the basics here, for you to use.

Nuclear Science

Please don't. FMAB skirts the issue by using magic to explain molecular reassembly, and that's fine, but be aware that there is a gargantuan amount of energy involved in keeping sub-atomic components together. If your character manipulates that in order to create new elements, then there are two things you should be aware of. The first is that breaking apart atoms is an exothermic reaction to the degree of the atomic bomb (because that's what an atomic bomb is, after all) and can reach the temperature of 100,000,000 degrees Celsius. This negates the need for pyromancy, and in fact will negate the general area around the caster as a result of this spell. If you decide to ignore the laws of thermodynamics and have your character able to manipulate the strong and weak force at will with no exothermic (or for that matter, endothermic) repercussions, then you've essentially created Molecule Man, and using his power for pyromancy is a waste, seeing as instead of shifting the elements into the correct elements for a highly unstable reaction, he can just turn all his opponents into gases.


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