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Is Time Travel Possible?

Updated on July 21, 2018
Sudhir Devapalan profile image

I am a front-end developer by profession, but I enjoy writing articles about anything mysterious, interesting, and fascinating.

Time travel is a concept which is very famous in both fiction and science. There are a number of movies which uses the concept of time travel in their plot and this makes us think if it could really be possible. There are also many scientists who have researched the possibility of time travel in real life. So is time travel really possible?

What Is Time Travel?

Time travel is defined as moving back or forward in time, typically using a device known as a time machine. This means that using time travel, you can move back to your past to alter history or travel into the future of this world. The concept of time travel has been around for a long time and the idea of a time machine was introduced by H.G. Wells in his 1895 novel, The Time Machine.

Science Of Time Travel:

Scientifically traveling into the future is relatively simple. There is no need for a time machine to make it happen. In fact, there are many people who have already done this! According to Einstein’s theory of relativity, time passes at different rates for people who are moving relative to one another. So if you travel really fast then time will pass a little slower for you. You will need to travel at a speed of at least a fraction of the speed of light to make significant progress though.

This means that astronauts who spend a long period of time in space traveling very fast are technically making a time travel. So they will not have aged as much as the people who are on earth. This is known as the “Twins Paradox”. Though the difference in time would be only a few milliseconds. So going into the future seems relatively simple as we just need to travel fast. But what about getting back?

This is the main problem with time travel. It is very difficult and might even be impossible to travel back to our past. According to the theory of general relativity, it is possible to go back in time if a person is able to move faster than the speed of light. But it also contradicts with other laws of physics. If an object moves faster than the speed of light, it will have infinite mass which is impossible.

There are, however, other means to travel back in time. Wormholes are the best chance of making time travel possible. A wormhole essentially connects two points in space through a higher dimension. An object entering the wormhole on one side will almost immediately come out of the other side, even if they are separated by millions of miles. Thus the person would have traveled faster than the speed of light and thereby traveled back in time. There is, however, no concrete proof of this theory as well.

Time Travel Conspiracies:

There are various conspiracy theories revolving around time travel. It is believed that there have already been several people who visited us from the future. On 28th January 2008, Andrew Carlssin was arrested for insider trading. By investing just $800, he was able to earn $350 million in just 2 weeks. Upon interrogation, he revealed that he was a time traveler from 2256. A mystery person paid $1 million in bail money for Carlssin and he was never found again.

Time Travel Conspiracies:

Charlie Chaplin’s movie, ‘The Circus’ came out in 1928. In this movie, there is a scene where a woman walking in the background appears to be shielding her face. On close inspection, she seems to be holding some device, possibly a cell phone. Many believe that this lady was a possible time traveler.

Time traveler
Time traveler

During the 1941 reopening of South Fork Bridge in Gold Bridge, British Colombia a picture was taken which seemed to be a little out of place. In this picture is a man who is dressed in modern clothing with sunglasses. This type of clothing and glasses were not typical of the clothes worn in the 1940s. However, these sunglasses are said to have been introduced in the 1920s and his shirt looks similar to the one used by the Montreal Maroons, an ice hockey team of the era. Still, his clothing seems a bit too casual for the people around him and is up for debate.

Issues With Time Travel:

Grandfather Paradox
Grandfather Paradox

According to chaos theory, the butterfly effect is the sensitive dependence of small changes which will have a greater effect or consequence. To put it in simple words, the time of formation and intensity of a tornado can be altered by a single wingbeat of a butterfly hundreds of miles away. So any small change that happens in this world will have far-reaching consequences.

If the single wingbeat of a butterfly can change things drastically, then a person who is traveling in time will change the entire course of history very easily. This, in turn, could affect the time travel of the person himself. A more famous version of this is defined as the “Time Traveler Paradox”.

If a time traveler goes back in time and kills his own grandfather before he has a child, then we are left with a paradox. If his grandfather had died before his father or mother were born, then he himself would not have come into existence. But if this is the case then the time travel itself would not have been possible thus creating a paradox.

Parallel Universe:

Parallel Universes
Parallel Universes

To solve this problem we have the concept of the parallel universe. Parallel Universe is a hypothetical self-contained reality. It suggests that there is an infinite number of universes existing in parallel with our own. We are not able to see the other universes because our vision is limited by the speed of light. All these parallel universes are related and branch from our own.

But all these universes have different realities and outcomes. In these parallel universes, the fate of the world might be different. The decision we had taken will be different, the outcome of wars will be different. So if a person travels back in time and changes history, then he would have not actually altered the history of our universe but created another parallel universe with a different reality. So if this is the case, even if we had succeeded in time travel, we will never know about it as the change will be not part of our own universe.

© 2018 Random Thoughts

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    • bhattuc profile image

      Umesh Chandra Bhatt 

      15 months ago from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India

      In my understanding, time travel is a theoretical concept. In reality the time moves in a forward direction and its speed may appear slow or fast to us depending upon our speed but there is no way to go back or forward.

      Actually what we can perceive by moving fast is only the image of our past like an image on TV screen. There is no life in it.

      Today what we are seeing deep in the universe is the image of it belonging to million years back. It is an image and not a reality. If that star has exploded or vanished by now we do not know it.

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