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"Evolutionary success ... is going to absolutely require mobility on, at a minimum, an interplanetary scale. We either go or we die out."
- Richard Morgan

Neutron Disruption Blaster  
  Beam pistol which splits neutrons into protons and electrons, releasing enormous energy.  

In the "Paratime" series by Horace Beam Piper(1904-1964), this was used by the First Level civilization. Since ours is Fourth Level, hopefully we won't be making one any time soon.

"...Verkan Vall aimed the blaster and squeezed. In a spot less than a millimeter in diameter on the crocodile idol's side, a certain number of neutrons in the atomic structure of the stone from which it was carved broke apart, becoming in effect atoms of hydrogen. With a flash and a bang, the idol burst and vanished.
From The Complete Paratime, by H. Beam Piper.
Published by Astounding Fiction in 1951
Additional resources -

Largely self-educated, H. Beam Piper created the fascinatingly complex "Paratime" alternate history world, with levels and sublevels of varying technological advancement, based on the premise of Earth being colonized by Martians 100,000 years ago.

Compare to the blaster from When the Green Star Waned (1925) by Nictzin Dyalhis, the stationary automatic blaster from Red Planet (1949) by Robert Heinlein and the meteor blasters from First Contact (1945), by Murray Leinster.

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Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Complete Paratime
  More Ideas and Technology by H. Beam Piper
  Tech news articles related to The Complete Paratime
  Tech news articles related to works by H. Beam Piper

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