MadSci Network: Physics

Re: What would happen to your hand in the beam of a lrg particle accelerator?

Date: Wed Oct 28 14:13:52 1998
Posted By: Tye Morancy, Grad student, Physics, UMASS Lowell
Area of science: Physics
ID: 908668779.Ph

Hi Matt,
     In answer to your question about the particle accelerator, I have a 
question myself about how you asked it.  You asked what would happen to 
your hand in the beam of a "lrg" particle accelerator.  I am assuming that 
you meant to say large, right?

     If someone put their hand in the beam of a large particle 
accelerator, their hand would get badly burned.  There are lots of 
different kinds of particle accelerators.  Some might not seem to do 
anything to your hand but some types of scars and burning would appear 
later.  Other types can burn your hand right away as I said.  With most 
accelerators it is also dangerous to be next to the machine itself because 
all kinds of harmful particles are coming out of the machine into the room 
that the accelerator is in.  
    Putting a hand into an accelerator beam might also damage the skin and 
hand tissue and lead to loss of skin, infections, and cancer.

     I hope I answered your question.  If not just write back and let me 
know how and can answer it better.  

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