My question is based in this Wikipedia article about the Jupiter magnetic field: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnetosphere_of_Jupiter

Jupiter magnetic field generates plasma and accelerates ionized molecules, eventually producing collisions. Is anti matter generated naturally under this scenario?


1 Answer 1


Yes it is. See this 2012 blog post by Paul Gilster:


It says things like this:

Antimatter in space is an idea that James Bickford (Draper Laboratory) analyzed in a Phase II study for NASA’s Institute for Advanced Concepts, for he had realized that high-energy galactic cosmic rays interacting with the interstellar medium (and also with the upper atmospheres of planets in the Solar System) produce antimatter. In fact, Bickford’s calculations showed that about a kilogram of antiprotons enter the Solar System every second, though little of this reaches the Earth. To harvest some of this incoming antimatter, you need a planet with a strong magnetic field, so Jupiter is a natural bet for Baxter’s scientists, who go there to forage.

But it also says Saturn's a better bet, and that Earth is handier, along with this:

The problem with this — and this has been noted by The Physics arXiv Blog and Jennifer Ouellette in recent days — is that PAMELA could come up with only 28 antiprotons over the course of 850 days of data acquisition. There is no question that Bickford is right in seeing how antimatter can be produced locally. In fact, the paper on the PAMELA work says this: “The flux exceeds the galactic CR antiproton flux by three orders of magnitude at the current solar minimum, thereby constituting the most abundant antiproton source near the Earth.” But does the process produce enough antimatter to make local harvesting a serious possibility?

If you want some antimatter, buy a banana. I kid yet not. See the Symmetry article antimatter from bananas. Flip Tanedo says this: “While researching natural sources of antimatter, I discovered a curious article about a naturally occurring potassium isotope that, some fraction of the time, decays via positron emission. The conclusion was that: The average banana (rich in potassium) produces a positron roughly once every 75 minutes”. Better still, buy a whole bunch of bananas!

  • 2
    $\begingroup$ But those are antiprotons produced by cosmic ray collisions (as I mentioned earlier), not purely from collisions of the local matter in the magnetosphere, which is what the OP is asking about. Saturn actually collects more such antiprotons than Jupiter does. Even so, the total amount trapped by Saturn is approximately a milligram. $\endgroup$
    – PM 2Ring
    Mar 12, 2019 at 22:29
  • $\begingroup$ @PM 2Ring : I didn't think the method really mattered. The word "generated" is somewhat ambiguous. $\endgroup$ Mar 14, 2019 at 19:34

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