Ethics and the Anti-Matter Bomb

October 5th, 2004

Posted by: admin

Keary Davidson writes in yesterday’s San Francisco Chronicle about US Air Force research into using anti-matter for a wide array of weapons, engines, and power sources. The research is a long, long way from deploying any new technology, but still raises many questions fundamental to science policy. The dawn of the nuclear age brought the ethics of scientific advancement to public attention, a debate that continues today in the nuclear and bio-tech industries. Will society develop any technology available to them, or can effective brakes be placed on research? If so would we even want to slow technological progress? These basic philisophic questions appear in much STS literature, from Jacques Ellul’s 1964 book The Technological Society to Francis Fukuyama’s 2002 book Our Postmodern Future, but don’t often appear in science policy debates. Yet how we answer these questions greatly affects the scope and design of basic science policy efforts. Should the research related to nuclear, biological, or chemical weapons be kept secret? Should policy try to contain stem-cell research? How can we minimize unintended consequences?

One Response to “Ethics and the Anti-Matter Bomb”

  1. Ronald Edberg Says:

    Your article is interesting, but how do we know that the so-called anti-matter bomb is not a red herring. What is the proof it exists and has the destructive power claimed?
    We all need to understand how to prevent a world war and other major disaster. The first thing to do is to go to Dr. Tom Bearden’s web site at and read his 14th October scalar weapons threat paper. That is where the action is, and that is why the so-called anti-matter bomb may just be a diversion.
    Best Wishes