Physics Van 3-site Navigational Menu

Physics Van Navigational Menu

Q & A: Anti-lightbulbs?

Learn more physics!

Most recent answer: 12/22/2011
Q:
Sorry to bug you with more questions, but theoretically, if somebody were to make a lightbulb entirely out of antiparticles, and charge it with anti-electrons, would the lightbulb emit anti-photons? And I mean if the lightbulb was an exact replica, as if you were to take a normal lightbulb and wave a magic wand to make all of the particles the opposite of a normal lightbulbs. Would these anti photons, if hit our eyes and somehow didn't hit any photons on the way, would we see blackness, as if the anti-photons darken a room, instead of light a room?
- Jack G. (age 12)
Hanover, Marland, USA
A:
It turns out that a photon is its own anti-particle.   So you would see the light from an anti-bulb the same as from a regular bulb.  Just don't get too close to it.
It's a curious property of quantum field theory that elementary particles with half-integer spin like electrons or protons have distinct anti-particles.   On the other hand the neutral force carriers that have integer spin like photons or gluons or gravitons do not.

LeeH


(published on 12/22/2011)

Follow-up on this answer.