What is the Difference Between Cryonics and Cryogenics

The main difference between cryonics and cryogenics is that cryonics preserves deceased individuals with incurable conditions at low temperatures for potential future revival, while cryogenics is a broader scientific field focused on extremely low temperatures, including various applications in physics and engineering beyond human preservation.

Cryonics and cryogenics are both fields that involve the use of extremely low temperatures.

Key Areas Covered

1. What is Cryonics 
      – Definition, Features, Use
2. What is Cryogenics
      – Definition, Features, Use 
3. Similarities Between Cryonics and Cryogenics
      – Outline of Common Features
4. Difference Between Cryonics and Cryogenics
      – Comparison of Key Differences
5. FAQ: Cryonics and Cryogenics
      – Frequently Asked Questions

Key Terms

Cryonics, Cryogenics

Difference Between Cryonics and Cryogenics - Comparison Summary

What is Cryonics

Cryonics is a controversial field that explores the possibility of preserving the human body at extremely low temperatures with the hope of reviving it in the future. The concept is rooted in the idea that advances in medical technology may one day allow for the revival and cure of currently incurable conditions.

The process involves cooling a deceased person’s body to a temperature where metabolic and chemical processes virtually come to a halt, typically around -196 degrees Celsius (-321 degrees Fahrenheit), using liquid nitrogen. This state of suspended animation is intended to prevent cellular damage during the preservation period.

Compare Cryonics and Cryogenics

Cryonics faces numerous scientific, ethical, and logistical challenges. Critics argue that the current understanding of preservation techniques is insufficient to prevent irreversible damage to the human body’s delicate structures during the freezing and thawing processes. Furthermore, the ethical implications of attempting to resurrect individuals in the distant future raise questions about the continuity of consciousness, identity, and societal impact.

On the practical side, cryonics requires immediate intervention upon legal death, demanding a swift response that may not always be feasible. Additionally, the costs associated with cryonics services are substantial, limiting access primarily to those with financial means.

What is Cryogenics

Cryogenics is a branch of physics that deals with the production and effects of very low temperatures. The term is derived from the Greek words “kryos,” meaning cold or frost, and “genes,” meaning born or produced. It encompasses the study of materials and their behavior at temperatures below -150 degrees Celsius, where gases like nitrogen and helium exist in their liquid and solid states.

One of the most prominent applications of cryogenics is in the field of medical science, which is useful for cryopreservation. This involves freezing biological samples, such as cells, tissues, or even entire organs, to extremely low temperatures, preserving them for extended periods. This process has revolutionized organ transplantation, as it enables the storage and transportation of organs, expanding the window for successful transplantation.

Cryonics vs Cryogenics

In addition to medical applications, cryogenics plays a crucial role in various industries, particularly those requiring extreme cooling. Superconductivity, a phenomenon observed at extremely low temperatures, is useful in fields like electronics and magnet technology. Superconducting magnets, for example, are useful in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines and particle accelerators, enhancing the precision and efficiency of these technologies.

Furthermore, cryogenics has found applications in space exploration. Some spacecraft utilize cryogenic propellants, such as liquid oxygen and liquid hydrogen, to achieve high efficiency in rocket propulsion. The ability to store and handle these cryogenic fuels is vital for the success of space missions.

Similarities Between Cryonics and Cryogenics

  • Both involve low temperatures.
  • Both can be applied to the preservation of biological entities, such as cells or tissues.

Difference Between Cryonics and Cryogenics


Cryonics involves preserving humans or animals at very low temperatures with the hope of reviving them in the future when medical technology has advanced sufficiently. On the other hand, cryogenics includes the study and application of extremely low temperatures, often used in various scientific and industrial applications, such as preserving biological samples or liquefying gases.


Cryonics is primarily associated with the preservation of deceased individuals in anticipation of potential future revival. However, cryogenics is applied in diverse fields, including physics, medicine, and engineering, for tasks like preserving biological materials, conducting experiments at low temperatures, and creating superconductors.


Cryonics focuses on preserving the body or brain of a deceased individual with the aim of possible revival, whereas cryogenics focuses on achieving and maintaining extremely low temperatures for various purposes, not necessarily involving living organisms.

FAQ: Cryonics and Cryogenics

What is the process of cryogenics?

Essentially, cryogenic processing consists of lowering the temperature of the gas stream to approximately −85°C (−120°F).

Why are cryogenics used?

Cryogenics is used for various purposes, primarily involving the application of extremely low temperatures. Common reasons include the preservation of biological samples, liquefaction of gases, and experimentation in physics and materials science.

Can you wake up from cryonics?

You cannot be woken up from cryopreservation because you are dead, but you can be woken up from suspended animation.


Cryonics is the practice of preserving individuals who have died from what is currently considered an incurable medical condition at very low temperatures, with the hope that advances in future medical technology may allow for revival. Meanwhile, cryogenics is the broader field of study that deals with extremely low temperatures and the behavior of materials at those temperatures, encompassing various applications beyond human preservation, such as in physics and engineering. Thus, this is the main difference between cryonics and cryogenics.


1. “Cryonics.” Wikipedia. Wikipedia Foundation.
2. “Cryogenics.” Encyclopedia Britannica.

Image Courtesy:

1. “Cryo surgery” By Alcor Life Extension Foundation (CC BY 2.5) via Commons Wikimedia
2. “Cryogenic Gases Delivery Truck Ypsilanti Michigan” By Dwight Burdette – Own work (CC BY 3.0) via Commons Wikimedia

About the Author: Hasini A

Hasini is a graduate of Applied Science with a strong background in forestry, environmental science, chemistry, and management science. She is an amateur photographer with a keen interest in exploring the wonders of nature and science.

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