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The free neutron will degrade to a proton electron and anti neutrino in about 15 minutes. Assuming you could slow a beam of free neutrons sufficiently to keep the size of the reactor manageable: Is it possible to use this fact to make a direct current generator?

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    $\begingroup$ How would you produce free neutrons? $\endgroup$ – Rob Jeffries Mar 23 at 15:58
  • $\begingroup$ Keeping a subcritical block of P 239 perhaps. Maybe neutronic fusion. I know that aspect is being researched. I figure you could use permenant magnets to separate the protons and electrons to create the source and the sink., but coherent beam of free neutrons would move so fast that after 15 minutes aize of the device would be so large as to be impractical. $\endgroup$ – Ba'lroc Demos Mar 23 at 17:09
  • $\begingroup$ see en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ultracold_neutrons ., newscientist.com/article/mg13217892-300-cold-neutrons . The problem will be with the numbers, to get measurable current from electrons and protons . quora.com/How-many-electrons-flow-in-a-1-ampere-current. there is a large facility for cold neutrons ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4927246 . $\endgroup$ – anna v Mar 23 at 17:47
  • $\begingroup$ Assuming the beam is sufficiently degraded after 15 minutes, And magnetically seperated into a P and e stream, I would expect the voltage would be proportional to the number of free neutrons per second generated at the source. $\endgroup$ – Ba'lroc Demos Mar 23 at 19:38
  • $\begingroup$ Are you interested in generating an electrical current in some kind of neutron-bottle? Or are you interested in harnessing the energy of the decay? Neither is practical, but they're impractical for different reasons. $\endgroup$ – rob Apr 10 at 17:30

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