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In a type Ia Supernova, the carbon accumulated in the earlier stages of a stars death fissues to create even heavier elements. Could this be used by humans aswell? Is it theoretically possible to build a Carbon Bomb?

This thread explains a bit about it; I guess these pressure values cannot even be achieved with a Hydrogen Bomb as a fuse? In turn, could it be used for commercial reasons (in the far future, e.g. as spacecraft engine?)

Does anyone know further reference?

How much damage would such a bomb deal? (approximate scale of course, would it destroy our entire planet or just scratch my nose)

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

the ratio of energy to mass would arguably be lower than H-H or D-T fusion, so it would hardly be a preferred fusion reaction for space travel applications

For production purposes (be them energy, manufacture, etc.) we humans usually prefer more result (i.e: more energy output) as a result of less investment (i.e: less energy expenditure) to improve the efficiency of the conversion. As such, any fusion reaction for heavier elements will undoubtly be less energetic per dollar spent having it working, regardless if the purpose is weaponry, energy production or propulsion

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So the explosiveness does not scale exponetially? The only reason why Carbon explosions are so much more powerful in interstellar space is due to the speed of the explosion (caused, of course by higher temperatures and extreme densities compared to regular hydrogen fusions)? – CBenni Dec 2 '12 at 23:16
@CBenni Indeed. Type Ia's are thought to consist of a deflagration/detonation wave propagating throughout the WD, burning everything at once. On the other hand, a given mass of H or He could last thousands to billions of years before it is all burned during less explosive phases of stellar evolution. – Chris White Dec 3 '12 at 0:41
@CBenni: note that only the H/He/whatever in the core is exhausted during the transitions to higher Z fusion. This means thtat these stars still have plenty of hydrogen that still can fuse, hence Chris White's answer. – Jerry Schirmer Dec 3 '12 at 1:06

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