Professor Says He Found Equation That Makes Time Travel Possible
In 1895, author H.G. Wells captured the imagination of his readers by having his protagonist, a Victorian English scientist, bravely climb into a time machine and set off into uncharted territory. Wells is credited with coining the phrase “time travel,” although the idea of exiting one timeframe and entering into another has intrigued humankind far into the misty past.
To this day, many still feel that it's entirely possible to traverse time if we could only discover how. But now, the time may have finally come: A prominent astrophysicist recently claimed that he now has the mathematics to make time travel a reality.
Here we are, a hundred years since the introduction of Einstein’s Theory of General Relativity, and science is closing in on time travel. Astrophysicist Ron Mallett, professor emeritus of physics, has been studying time travel long before embarking on his professional career.
Now in his 70s, he has at long last — at least theoretically — discovered a way to travel into the past. Putting his mathematical equation to work, he has come up with a prototype device with functionality that seems plausible, although he has yet to wow his contemporaries who are standing in the wings to see what comes next.
Ingenuity Sparked by Tragedy
Although Mallett’s work is tantalizing from a scientific perspective, his yearning to rekindle the past has been driven by a strong desire to reunite with his father who died from a heart attack when Mallett was only 10 years old. Regarding his father’s passing, Mallett said, “For me, the sun rose and set on him, he was just the center of things…Even today, after all of these years, there’s still an unreality about it for me.” This tragic event changed the course of his life, and maybe even the lives of humankind, especially if his invention bears fruit.
Shortly after his father’s death, the young Mallett came across a copy of H.G. Well’s novel The Time Machine, and after he read the book he was imbued with hope and a desire to conquer time through science.
Twisting Natural Forces of Light and Space
In 2015, Dr. Mallett said that “time travel could, in fact, become a reality, though perhaps on a very limited scale…My breakthrough was to realize that if gravity can alter time, and light can create gravity, then light can alter time. This leads to the possibility of a time machine based on laser light.”
Mallett’s prototype is based on his research of a circulating laser light device that’s capable of twisting space and time, enabling travel into the past or future. His success hinges on Einstein’s theory of relativity, as well as Einstein’s general theory of relativity. Einstein showed that time can be altered by speed. An example of this would be realized when traveling through space in a rocket that’s almost as fast as the speed of light. Time would considerably slow down in space, though while on Earth, many more years would have passed. Therefore, the faster you travel, the more time changes. This has much to do with gravity, as well, because time slows down when gravity becomes stronger.
The force of gravity, according to Einstein’s general theory of relativity is the bending of space by a massive object. “If you can bend space, there’s a possibility of you twisting space,” said Mallett. In the simplest terms, whatever affects space also affects time. The professor’s theory proposes that by twisting time into a loop it should be possible to travel from the future into the past, and then back to the future.
Mallett Sees the Light
We can add yet another factor into Mallett’s theory that time travel is possible: Light can also affect time by using a ring laser. In a CNN interview, he said that a certain type of gravitational field produced by a ring laser could possibly comprise a time machine based on a circulating beam of light. “Eventually a circulating beam of laser lights could act as a sort of a time machine and cause a twisting of time that would allow you to go back into the past,” he says.
While Ron Mallett has come up with the mathematics to back up his theory of time travel, he does admit to one huge problem. While it may be possible to send information back in time, (as of this writing) it’s only theoretically possible to send it back to the point at which the time machine is turned on.
Doubtlessly, a great deal of science fiction eventually manifests into reality — including travel through space, walking on the moon and landing on Mars, laser beams that cut through metal like a knife through butter, and so much more. Perhaps Ron Mallett — an astrophysicist with a lifelong dream of traveling through time — has come up with an equation that is sure to stand the test of time.
Artificial Intelligence Finds Missing Ghost Ancestor of Humans
Our ancestry as a species is intricate and convoluted. We know that Denisovans, Neanderthals, and the other iterations of our hominin ancestors interbred and evolved over hundreds of thousands of years. But while anthropologists have done their best to map out this complicated lineage, we’ve now reached a point in our evolution that machines can map our genealogy better than we can. Such was the case when a machine learning algorithm applied to our DNA roadmap found a new ancestor we didn’t even know existed.
According to a study published in Nature Communications, scientists fed DNA data from fossilized bones and modern humans into an A.I. algorithm that computed thousands of timelines to map out the possible evolutionary pathways based on what we know – or what we think we know – about our ancestors migrations, diasporas, and interbreeding to tell us if we were missing anything.
It turns out we were…
The new study found that a missing, archaic “ghost” ancestor played a significant role in the development of the human species, helping to propel us from primitive hominins to the highly intelligent beings we are today.
This ancestor was likely a hybrid of Neanderthals and the Denisovans – the hominin ancestor discovered in 2010, that five percent of modern humans can still directly trace their genealogy through.
And though the study’s authors are referring to this hominin hybrid as a “ghost” population, they also believe there might be fossil evidence of it found in the bones of a 90,000-year-old specimen of a teenage girl discovered in Siberia’s Denisova cave – the location where the original Denisovan fossils were found.
The discovery of the Denisovans has presented itself as one of the most profound and baffling finds for archeologists within the past decade as their fossil remains showed they existed for millennia alongside our other ancestors. Not to mention they appear to have been massive in comparison to other hominin species.
And by massive, they mean that a Denisovan wisdom tooth found in the cave was originally mistaken for that of a bear’s. And though wisdom teeth can vary in size, the anthropologist studying the specimen, Bence Viola, told National Geographic, “large teeth with massive roots would probably require massive jaws.”
Who were these gigantic Denisovans whom we know so little about, and even more baffling, what did their hybrid progeny with Neanderthal’s look like? These paradigm-shifting discoveries only add to the fact that we still have so much more to learn about our species’ history.
For more on the strange discovery of the gigantic Denisovans check out this episode of Ancient Civilizations :