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Is it possible to make a magnetic field strong enough to prevent a gun from firing? Answered

Is it possible to make a magnetic field strong enough to prevent a gun from firing, stoppng the moving parts from moving? If so is it possible to make it directional?



9 years ago

Hmm, I think the mythbusters did something along this line.

http://mythbustersresults.com/episode95 There it is.

It's not exactly the same, but I think it goes to show that you would need really strong magnets, and it still wouldn't do much.


9 years ago

If you wanted to attract the bullet it probably would not work if they were using lead bullets.

An unmoving magnetic field isn't the right tool for this task. Some of the most powerful magnets you are ever likely to see are in MRI machines. If you happen to be inside one when a piece of steel is nearby, this is incredibly dangerous. But if you are in the next room, there is no danger at all.

The reason is that (when you're not right next to the magnet) magnetic fields drop off roughly with the cube of the distance. That is, if you had some incredibly powerful magnet that could lift 1000 pounds from one foot away, it could only lift 8 lbs from 5 feet and 1 lb from ten feet.

For a demonstration with a MRI magnet, see the following video:
(In case you were wondering why they didn't just shut off power to the magnet, it's because this would require dumping the liquid helium coolant, a very expensive and somewhat dangerous procedure.)

So, even if you had enough power to magnetically pull a gun from someone's hand at ten feet, there are many more effective ways you could prevent the person from shooting anyone.

No. However, if you have some really quick ninja skillz you might be able to jam a magnet inside the barrel thereby plugging it and causting the barrel to explode. But like the magnetic field idea, this would probably only work in a cartoon world. bummer.

No, not really, unless the gun was pulled-out of a person's hand and stuck to the magnet. But you'd need a rather powerful (non-portable) magnet, and the gun would have to be rather close to it (i.e. <1 metre) L