Sunday, April 8, 2012

Time Travel: It's Been Done Before!

"Time Travel: It's Been Done Before!"," We all have the ability to leap forward through time, even if we don't realize it. We want to be able to go back and redo those silly mistakes we made many years ago. Or perhaps you'd rather travel 500 years into the future and see those flying cars we were promised by the year 2000. In fact there is no law in physics that prevents time travel. But as the saying goes, with great power comes great responsibility. For example, what if I travelled back in time and prevented World War II? Sounds like a brilliant idea right? Countless lives would be saved, I'd be hailed as a hero! Not necessarily. What about all the techonolgy that we rely on today that was developed during the war, such as jet engines and nuclear power. We could actually be worse off than simply leaving history as it was. My parents couldn't have met and thus, I would never have been born. So we can see that time travel could be a bad idea, but let's say we really want to go back in time, how would we do it? Well first we need to understand how time works. Isaac Newton thought that time was constant and never deviated, which would of course make time travel impossible. Einstein theorized that space and time are inexplicably linked in what he refers to as ""space-time"". While this appears to be true and scientists continue to explore its possibilities, the real possibility for time travel, seems to be in his other theory; Relativity. According to Einstein's theory of general relativity, no object with mass may travel faster than the speed of light, which is an astonishing 299,792,458 metres per second in a vacuum (that's no air). 99% the speed of light. I'll leave the equations out of this, but that would mean that my speed plus the speed of the plane would mean that I'm travelling at 1,080 million and ten kilometres an hour, which is 10km/h faster than light, right? Wrong. Sounds weird doesn't it. In fact you would need more than an infinite supply of fuel to travel faster than light, which is obviously impossible. However to me in the car, they too would travel past me at 50km/h. Hard to believe? It's the same thing that makes it look the car driving beside you on the highway sometimes seems to be floating just outside your window. If you're travelling in the same direction as the object you're observing, in this case the other car, you subtract your speed from theirs. so they would appear to be stationary. So 50km/h plus another 50km/h is equal to 100km/h. So how does all this work, and more importantly, how did they actually manage to travel through time? Well as it turns out, the faster we travel, the slower time will pass. Before launch the clock was perfectly synced with another atomic clock here on earth, and once the shuttle had returned to earth they put the two clocks together. meaning time had past slower for the clock on the shuttle than the clock that remained on Earth. Sergei Krikalev, the current record holder for the longest time spent in space (about 804 days or 2. furthermore, scientists have actually calculated that if we could orbit the Earth at 99% of light speeed. This effect is known as Time Dilation. The only problem is inventing a machine or vehicle capable of travelling that fast. We would actually need the power of a whole star to get to that speed. Such travel to the past, as stated above would lead to paradoxes that could result in the collapse of an entire universe, or a completely new one to be formed. There are other theories to travel both forward and backwards in time such as black holes and wormholes, but I'll discuss those in the future. So we'll just have to settle for travelling forwards in time at the same rate we always have, and just to wait to see what the future holds. TRY SOMETHING NEW JUST CLICK HERE

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