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What is time travel, exactly? As I write this sentence, I am speeding through time at a pace of one hour per hour! (Marc, Dr.) Time travel would be possible if one could travel 4 hours per hour. Most people think of time travel as either heading to the future or going back in time. Time travel is an enthralling phenomenon, as shown by the countless science fiction films that have graced our screens in recent decades. Since Albert Einstein's genius was revealed to the world a century ago, hundreds of scientists have taken time travel seriously. The impacts of time travel, for example into the future, are mind-boggling. Time travel could impact the media and society by influencing education systems. Depictions of time travel from films and the current futurists like Michio Kaku and Kipps Thorne suggests our generation is very imaginative. People depict time journey as a tool to influence their present if they traveled to the future or the past, like, what could one do differently if he/she could go five years ago and more often than not, people think of an easy money making schemes like winning a lottery. Implications of time travel in media or the fashion world are immense for example if you could own that iconic fashion trend that is ruling the fashion world in the future. At the advent of human civilizations, human beings have conquered travel by land and water, and later through the air and now we have another travel realm to concur; travel through time. Now comes an age-old young question, is time even really possible? If the geniuses in the theoretical physics fields and engineering fields put their heads together, applying the equations in quantum physics and the mechanics would we see an era of time travel? The good news is that time travel is possible owing to the evidence from Albert Einstein's special and general relativity equations and also because of the new proven aspect of the equations called time dilation.
Time travel has two aspects, future time travel, and past time travel. The latter aspect is proven harder to show its possibility but future time travel has presented positive news. Moving into one’s personal future is inevitable, but, one can govern the rate at which he/she moves through time (Sutter). To explain future time travel, we borrow from special relativity theory by Albert Einstein. According to special relativity, time and space are the same entity, and this entity is called space-time. Space is defined by the Cartesian plane axes, i.e., the, y, x and z-axes and time being referred to as the fourth dimension, hence the space-time. As of now, we can move through space arbitrarily, we can move forward, back, sideways or circularly, i.e., through all the axes of space. But the fourth dimension, time, is where are the human capabilities have failed to suffice and as explained by (Sutter), "we cannot avoid the future, time seems to have an "arrow," whereas spatial dimensions are ambidextrous." As we move through space, our speed limit is the speed of light, 300000 m/s. According to special relativity, if an object could move through space (keeping in mind space in our universe is infinite) at speed near the speed of light, then the object's time would run slower. For a more precise perspective, an example here is used: let's say using the object's onboard clock, five years have passed since it flew from to the time it comes back then, the time elapsed on earth will be 40 years (Dr.Marc). Well, the object will have traveled through time at a faster rate, and that is time travel. So if future technology can design a machine that can attain near-light speeds, then time travel is possible.
General relativity brings in a concept of closed time-like curves (CTCs) (Kaku, Thorne and Wolf). Time-like implies that speed cannot go beyond that of light while a curve means a route of travel, and closed means that the curve returns to its point of origin, in other words, its past. Luckily there are several configurations that allow the existence of CTCs or past time travel. One configuration states that if the universe was both accelerating and rotating, then CTCs are possible. Another theory is that if an infinitely long cylinder were invented then made to turn at its axis at speed near that of light, space-time would be dragged around it such that some parts of the cylinder would interact with their past (Kaku, Thorne and Wolf). Another promising theory of time travel is the possible creation of wormholes. Einstein posited that there is a possibility that wormholes exist. A wormhole is a shortcut through the fabric space-time. Astrophysicist Kipps Thorne explained that wormholes could be designed into time travel machines by the fact that a wormhole can act as a time bridge between different time periods (Estes). If a wormhole's entrance could be sped at light speed then reversed back, then the speeding entry would age slower than the other stationary access due to time dilation. Time dilation is the idea moving clocks age less than still watches (Estes). Time dilation has been recently proven to be true, and its effects have always even been accounted for when designing space traveling vessels.
In conclusion, time travel is possible from the theories of fast traveling vessels, the existence of CTCs and possibility of existence or creation of wormholes. The upside is that we currently lack energy sources that can be used accelerate a spaceship at the speed of light or to create wormholes. However, some theories governing the aspects of time travel have been proven like time dilation, and more will be shown, so the sky is only but the limit.
Dr.Marc. Is Time Travel Possible? n.d. 13 November 2017 .
Estes, Adam Clark. Yes, Time Travel is Possible; Here is How. 11 May 2014. 13 November 2017 .
Kaku, Michio, et al. Is Time Travel Possible n.d.
Sutter, Paul. Time Travel Isn't Possible...Or is It? 29 August 2017. 13 November 2017 .
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