MATRIXSYNTH: antimatter annihilation and modular synth

Saturday, June 20, 2020

antimatter annihilation and modular synth


Giorgio Sancristoforo

"For the first time in history, antimatter is used for music.

All the sounds of this piece are triggered by positron annihilation from a Na22 source. For the task I've programmed a custom gamma spectroscope that outputs the annihilation gamma peaks at 0.511MeV, these pulses are sent in realtime to a MIDI to CV converter.

A positron is the anti-particle of the electron, having positive charge instead of negative. Positron emission is a special case of beta decay. Inside the unstable nucleus, a proton is transformed into a neutron, and in the process, the nucleus emits a neutrino and a positron.

As soon as the positron encounters an electron on its path, they attract each other and finally annihilate, transforming all their mass into energy (2 entangled gamma photons at 0.511MeV), following E=mc^2.

I'll film the process in the next weeks.
Use headphones for best listening experience.

Sound generation: Shuttle Endorphin.es synthesizer.
MCA software written on Cycling '74 Max/MSP

Dedicated to the memory of Iannis Xenakis."

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