Physics Professor Brian Cox has determined that time travel is theoretically possible and that time machines could one day be a reality.
The British professor, who is also a TV Presenter and pop musician (having some success with the Northern Irish band D:Ream in the 1990’s), used Dr. Who’s famous TARDIS as a broad example of the type of time machine that he believes to be theoretically possible as well as scientifically sound.
“Can you build a time machine?” asked Cox during his speech at the British science festival, before answering his own question with a resounding “yes”.
However, according to Cox’s research, whilst time travel to the future is theoretically possible, time travel to the past is completely impossible. In addition, the trip would only be one way; there would be no going home.
Cox isn’t the first person to make this announcement; in fact, he’s borrowing directly from Einstein’s theory of special relativity when he states that movement at speeds close to the speed of light would theoretically cause time to slow down, but only for the individual travelling at such speeds.
Says Cox, “If you go fast, your clock runs slow relative to people who are still. As you approach the speed of light, your clock runs so slow you could come back 10,000 years in the future,”
Some scientists have suggested that the use of ‘wormholes’ would be a theoretically acceptable form of time travel. In fact, wormholes are a staple of science fiction stories. A wormhole (perhaps better referred to as an Einstein-Rosen Bridge) is, effectively, a passageway, or ‘shortcut’, through spacetime. The effect of a wormhole would be the spacial equivalent of writing ‘A’ on the far end of a piece of paper and ‘B’ on the other side, then putting the two letters together and punching a hole through the paper with a pencil.
However, in his speech, professor Cox refuted the idea that such a ‘bridge’ could ever be truly stable, saying,
“In General Relativity, you can do it in principle. It’s to do with building these things called wormholes; shortcuts through space and time. But most physicists doubt it. Hawking came up with the ‘chronology protection conjecture’ – physics we don’t yet understand that means wormholes are not stable.”
On the heels of this announcement, Professor Cox, an ardent fan of Dr. Who, will be delivering a 60-minute speech about the popular TV show, which will be screened by the BBC on November 23rd. In the speech, the professor will share his thoughts on the possibility of extraterrestrial life, the potential discovery of new dimensions and, of course, time travel.
BREAKING NEWS: “Time Travel is Possible, Says Noted Physicist”