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Chip
2002-Feb-11, 06:49 AM
Here’s an idea involving one of several purely theoretical methods for traveling very vast distances in space (and time) very quickly (from the traveler’s point of view) without violating the speed of light. Strictly on a theoretical level (meaning no consideration whatsoever for actual engineering,) and using far-flung physics as understood today by conventional science, how would one “build” (or could one build) a “worm-hole i.e. time machine?”

Three noted scientists in addition to others toyed with this question – perhaps as a mental exercise: Stephen Hawking, Kip Thorn, and Frank Tipler. (Tipler is known in speculative circles for his denying the existence of alien life – but that’s another story). Hawking and Thorne’s ideas resulted from their correspondences, and touch on the feasibilities of “worm holes” and negative energy. In Tipler’s case, in his paper: "Rotating Cylinders and Global Causality Violation" Physical Review, 2203-2206 (1974) – he devised what is today called a “Tipler Cylinder.”

According to Tipler, all you gotta do is, corral and line up a bunch of neutron stars (or black holes) and set them rapidly spinning so that they meld into a rotating cylinder or tunnel. You’ll need this cylinder to be infinitely long, so be sure to stretch it around into a closed loop. (I didn’t say it was easy! In fact, I said the idea has “no consideration whatsoever for actual engineering!”) Apparently, this is the hard part, and I haven’t read Tipler’s paper /phpBB/images/smiles/icon_wink.gif traveling carefully near the resultant tidal tunnel while avoiding being crushed will allow you to come out somewhere else in the universe as well as some when else. (This is based on Mr. Tipler’s physics and not on the need to sell a good Sci-fi story.) Tipler’s original paper mentioned above is difficult to obtain but nevertheless there is plenty of mention of the “Tipler Cylinder” as a time machine and/or time warp transport all over the Internet.

A couple of questions:
If some superduper advanced alien civilization could do this, as the infinite cylinder collapsed, wouldn’t they be kind of creating “cosmic string?”

Anybody read Tipler’s actual paper, and does he explain why it distorts time and space?

GrapesOfWrath
2002-Feb-11, 10:02 AM
On 2002-02-11 01:49, Chip wrote:
Hawking and Thorne’s ideas resulted from their correspondences, and touch on the feasibilities of “worm holes” and negative energy.
I've seen a story that Thorne's thinking on the subject resulted from a request by Carl Sagan for a reasonable theory for the time travel he was using in his book Contact. Thorne obliged, according to the story, and then went on to refine the idea. Anyone know if it is true?

sideways
2003-Sep-18, 04:59 PM
I love that Tipler Cylinder theory of time travel! Also, physicist Fred Alan Wolf provides a story of how cylinder time travel would work in his book Parallel Universes: The Search for Other Worlds. But in Wolf's book, the cylinder is only a few thousand kilometers long, not infinitely long.
:D

parejkoj
2003-Sep-18, 05:40 PM
I've seen a story that Thorne's thinking on the subject resulted from a request by Carl Sagan for a reasonable theory for the time travel he was using in his book Contact. Thorne obliged, according to the story, and then went on to refine the idea. Anyone know if it is true?

Yup, in a way. The original idea comes from Albert Einstein and Nathan Rosen (hence the name: Einstein-Rosen Bridge). This is actually discussed in Contact somewhere: someone mentions that an Einstein-Rosen Bridge would produce some of the effects that the travelers saw -- I think someone even calculates the time differences. Here's some discussion of this idea (yeah, it is a little disjointed, but it was the best I could find in 10 seconds of googling).
http://www.cakes.mcmail.com/StarTrek/worm.htm

mike alexander
2003-Sep-18, 11:07 PM
Undetstand not the physics, but Poul Anderson used Tipler cylinders in his novel 'The Avatar'.

Larry Niven wrote a short story using the same title as Tipler's paper.


And did anyone ever notice that Superman travelled into the future/past by SPINNING RAPIDLY? WHAAA?

Betenoire
2003-Sep-19, 08:10 PM
Superman: a neutron star in disguise?

mike alexander
2003-Sep-19, 08:46 PM
I think so. Ever notice how many of Superman's powers are all aspects of the ability to control inertia? Hence Gravity?

I've written a paper on the subject...

Gsquare
2003-Sep-20, 03:56 PM
I think so. Ever notice how many of Superman's powers are all aspects of the ability to control inertia? Hence Gravity?

.

Yes, that is true; he does control inertia well; and I have noticed that circling the earth at high speeds sent him back in time; 8)
However, if he's going to survive I think he needs to develope his long range Krypton detection capability. We almost lost him a couple of times due to his inability to stay away from that stuff! :P :wink:

G^2

Betenoire
2003-Sep-22, 04:30 PM
Well, he can't do EVERYTHING, I mean, he's not Superma- oh, wait...

Mnx4
2004-Mar-06, 07:53 AM
Hey... sorry to bump up an old topic but I was thinking about something pretty interesting. I'm not a physics major or anything, i'm just really interested in it. I've been reading up on the basics of string theory (The Elegant Universe by Brian Greene, a very interesting read) and I've been reading some John Titor archives.
Here's my idea:

According to Tipler, all you gotta do is, corral and line up a bunch of neutron stars (or black holes) and set them rapidly spinning so that they meld into a rotating cylinder or tunnel. You’ll need this cylinder to be infinitely long, so be sure to stretch it around into a closed loop.
Now, according to string theory, at least how i understand it, the graviton isn't exactly a closed loop as the other force messenger particles are, such as the photon for the electromagnetic force, which is a closed loop. The graviton is kind of like a cord in a telephone switch board back in the early days of telecommunication. It connects to each multidimensional membrane, or for an extended analogy, different switchboards. The graviton is theorized to exist in all dimensions and thusly, it seems to be the weakest force as all of it's potency is spread between a theorized 11 dimesions whereas forces like the electromagnetic force and the strong and weak forces exists in full strength (for the most part) in each dimesion, which i'm assuming is due to the fact that each of the messenger particles or strings for these forces are closed loop and exist in every dimension.
Now, when the Tipler cylinder is created, it must have a closed, infinite loop. So, I'm assuming that if we somehow can close the graviton, i.e. change it from looking like half of an O, kinda like this (, to a full O, (), then we have a closed loop of gravity, which can exert it's full force in "our" dimension. To create the cylinder part, the most recent addition to the list of dimesions must be used. What I mean is that originally, 10 dimensions were thought to exist. However, one can create an 11th dimension by stacking each individual closed string. To explain what i mean, pretend that car tires have no width, i.e. no tread. It's just an infinitley thin loop. Then take a bunch of other "tires" and lay them one on top of the other. You've just given a one dimensional objects a second dimension by stacking them.
Also, i didn't even realize this, but the end of the original post ends in

If some superduper advanced alien civilization could do this, as the infinite cylinder collapsed, wouldn’t they be kind of creating “cosmic string?”
Hehe, what a koinkidink :o

(EDIT)
After writing this post, i've realized how it may be possible to do that. To anyone who's read about John Titor (http://www.johntitor.com), a "time traveler" from the future, you may recall that he says there's a modified or special particle accelerator inside his time machine. Now, from what I remember, it is thought that our "Big Bang" may have been caused by two interdimensional membranes coming into contact with one another. Now, the energy that caused this, and this is just my hypothesizing, may have been from the individual strings from the force particles of each of these dimensions colliding together. Also, many graviton's may have had the chance to connect to form a full O, so this could have produced even more energy.
Now, it is said that in a particle accelerator, two particles collide to form a mini big bang. My guess is that a mini particle accelerator can be used to connect the loops of the graviton to form one fully closed string. Although i don't know which particles should be smashed, this at least gives an idea to the the problem of how to form a graviton closed string.

Anyone care to help me figure this out?
-Mnx4

Chip
2004-Mar-06, 09:14 AM
Looking over this thread about the "Tipler Cylinder" I realized I began with a curious statement:

...traveling very vast distances in space (and time) very quickly (from the traveler’s point of view) without violating the speed of light...
But isn't it true that theoretically, one doesn't need a "Tipler Cylinder" nor a "Worm Hole" for that. If you can manage to travel "very close to the speed of light" (and avoid interstellar gas, pebbles, asteroids, etc...) time will seem normal "from the traveler’s point of view," while the trip itself will be very quick. However, to the folks you left behind, you'll be gone a very very long time.

Of course the "Tipler Cylinder" is a mental exercise for understanding gravitational distortions of spacetime, while traveling close to the speed of light may one day become a remote engineering possibility.

Richard of Chelmsford
2004-Mar-06, 01:47 PM
Tipler's a great scientist and writer, but he said in 'The Physics of Immortality' that when we die we'll wake up in some computer programme in the far flung future.

Nay, I say.

If that fantastic computer was right beside me now, in my living room, it wouldn't suddenly take over my conciousness. It would contain a copy of my conciousness then go its own way.

So when I'm dead, I'll be dead, unless there's a Heaven. :cry:

Maksutov
2004-Mar-06, 02:45 PM
The really great thing about the cylinder is that there are practically no engineering challenges at all. Heck, we could start mass producing these things by 2025 at the latest. The amount of start up venture capital available should boggle the mind, almost as much as the original concept.

Meanwhile heaven remains one of the opiates of the power class.

Ach was...

Mnx4
2004-Mar-06, 05:13 PM
What do you mean that Tipler cylinders are a mental excercise? Do you simply mean that one would encounter massive amounts of gravity on the order of several neutron stars?
While yes, Tipler Cylinders wouldn't really need to be created to travel through time, I don't see us creating that amount of energy to propel something forward at that speed anytime soon. Besides, wouldn't traveling at the speed of light only allow a person to travel in one direction, either forward or backwards through time? The cylinder would at least give us a chance to return from where and when we came, right?

Chip
2004-Mar-06, 11:11 PM
...I don't see us creating that amount of energy to propel something forward at that speed anytime soon. Besides, wouldn't traveling at the speed of light only allow a person to travel in one direction, either forward or backwards through time?

Yes, that's why I said, "traveling close to the speed of light may one day become a remote engineering possibility." (i.e. We're still in the stage where it's a definite impossibility.)

When thinking about interstellar travel that a person within one lifetime could experience, a lot of people automatically think of just one mode of travel, such as matter/anti-matter propulsion, or big massive atomic engines, or giant laser powered solar sails, or they slip into hypothetical concepts such as "worm holes" and "negative energy" etc.

I think the reality if it ever occurs will be nothing much like Star Trek’s Starships. For example, it might involve aspects of technology that we are unable and actually unwilling to explore at this time. Such as? The transference and incorporation of human physiology and mental cognition, integrated within both projected and received electromagnetic transmission. This transmitted travel (not a "transporter") would be employed within a ship’s sensing devices. So a ship would incorporate the crew from which they can also reach out electromagnetically at light speed to sense destination data instantaneously.

(Confusing?) In other words, disassembling the human body and consciousness and incorporating it all with sensors functioning at light speed. The disassembling and melding of humans with machines for high-speed travel may not appeal to folks who envision the romantic Starship Enterprise approach. The crew would eventually be reassembled (literally) near arrival. So future human deep space travelers would be more akin to the Borg rather than Captain Kirk. This coupled with multilevel propulsion systems that reach by stages stabilized relative extreme velocities upon which additional velocities from different systems are then launched, always under but close to the speed of light. The goal being a maximum velocity that might be "99.9 of c". At that speed, a trip across the Milky Way might take 10 minutes (for the crew).

This also leads to the requirement and acceptance of a "selfish crew" concept, in that a trip to Alpha Centauri or somewhere further away would be a direct adventure for just the crew, who would not see their loved ones again. Though upon reaching their destination, the "we made it!" message would "only" take as long to reach Earth as the light years of distance are of their arrival point. However, if someone on Earth could project their consciousness on a beam of light via some similar mechanism, they could have instantaneous communication with the space-bound crew. (i.e. They’re not waiting for the light signal to reach them, they are the light signal itself. So time is instantaneous to them, or very short.) (That’s a bit too weird to pragmatically conceive of or contemplate as an engineered system today, and I’m thinking strictly in terms of engineering and not "energy" or "consciousness" as defined by New Age mumbo jumbo and fantasy.

To define this melding of a future ship with a human crew, consider this analogy, when a pilot climbs into the cockpit of a jet fighter, he incorporates his mind and body into the aircraft. His hands adjust the stick and throttle, his feet slip into the rudder pedals. He adjusts the trim, monitors the flight systems, communicates, receives data from the on-board computer, checks the altimeter, and a great many other things all defined as "flying the airplane". Now imagine the "airplane" requires the pilot, if he is going to literally travel to another world, to be actually physically and mentally assimilated into the on-board systems. (And reconstituted into a human being upon arrival.)

As for travel to the past, in this scenario, without wormholes or Tipler Cylinders, I don't think we can go back in time, (but we can "see" back in time through a telescope, without even leaving Earth.) Not sure about going to the past though. :o

harlequin
2004-Mar-07, 07:42 PM
Superman: a neutron star in disguise?

Want a "scientific" analysis of Superman?

Man of Steel,
Woman of Kleenex (http://www.rawbw.com/~svw/superman.html) by Larry Niven who has already been mentioned in this thread.

Tensor
2004-Mar-08, 09:52 PM
On 2002-02-11 01:49, Chip wrote:
Hawking and Thorne’s ideas resulted from their correspondences, and touch on the feasibilities of “worm holes” and negative energy.
I've seen a story that Thorne's thinking on the subject resulted from a request by Carl Sagan for a reasonable theory for the time travel he was using in his book Contact. Thorne obliged, according to the story, and then went on to refine the idea. Anyone know if it is true?

Milli, the entire story, including a explanation of the physics involved is in "Black Holes and Time Warps; Einstein's Outrageous Legacy" by Thorne. The thing I find most amusing is that he says he quit using the phrase "Time Machine" after his original paper caused something of a sensation in the press. He now uses the phrase "Closed timelike curves", which is the same thing. But the press, which doesn't understand the phrase to be the same, ignores it.

milli360
2004-Mar-08, 10:45 PM
Thanks Tensor, and I've since found a shorter reference to it in the back of the Contact novel. Art and Science...be fruitful and multiply.

Captain Kidd
2004-Mar-09, 02:19 PM
John DeChancie also wrote a triology, Starrigger, Paradox Alley and Red Limit Freeway, that used roads on various planets linked by wormholes created by Tipler Objects, he also mentioned Einstien-Rosenbridge in it too. The cylinders were of finite height, but varying diameters, they acted on local space to created wormholes between planets. Also, each would put you back in time slightly. It was really a rather interesting read. Trucks, sci-fi, aliens, what more to interest a kid? :)