In Steel Beneath the Skin Aneka has a pistol which fires anti-protons through a laser-evacuated channel in the air to cause small but powerful nuclear explosions when they hit their target. Science fiction, of course, but like many a sci-fi concept, maybe it doesn’t go far enough.
According to a post over at Longisland.com (and also at Engadget) a team at the University of Michigan have created a tabletop anti-matter generator. This device creates positrons, anti-matter’s versions of electrons, but it does so on the same sort of scale as the CERN particle accelerator, but using far cheaper, far smaller equipment. In Steel Beneath the Skin Monkey and Ella explain that iridium is used in the production of anti-matter with a particle accelerator. The idea behind Aneka’s blaster pistol is that it contains a store of anti-protons which it uses as ammo. Maybe it doesn’t need to; maybe it could actually create its ammo out of a laser beam hit just before firing. Considering how dangerous the stuff is, that would be a better design, though it would probably still be a very high-tech weapon since the power requirements are likely huge.