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Among the many cosmic mysteries, “wormholes” are especially popular. With their help, blockbuster heroes travel through different universes, but in reality the so-called Einstein-Rosen bridge is a mathematical addition to the general theory of relativity (GR). In 1916, mathematician Nathan Rosen and physicist Albert Einstein drew attention to the solution of the simplest GR equations describing isolated sources of the gravitational field. Scientists have suggested that this spatial structure is like a “bridge” connecting two identical universes (or two different points in space-time). Subsequently, these structures were called wormholes, but their existence has not been proven. However, despite their hypothetical status, wormholes are constantly present in the equations and help astrophysicists describe the structure of the Universe, the movement of stars, planets and other celestial objects. But if they really exist, is it possible to find them? Let’s figure it out!
Black holes and scientific facts
Black holes existed for a long time only in equations, and Einstein was sure that it was impossible to detect them. Just imagine what his reaction would be to the stunning successes of modern science – in 2016, scientists from the LIGO and VIRGO laboratories recorded gravitational waves emanating from the collision of two black holes (which are 29 and 36 times the size of our Sun).
For their work, the physicists were awarded the Nobel Prize in 2017, and two years later, the astonished public looked at the first ever image of the “shadow” of a black hole. We talked about this historical event and how scientists managed to photograph a black hole in our previous article.
A black hole is a region of space-time whose gravitational attraction is so strong that even the quanta of light itself cannot leave it .
Today, no one doubts the existence of black holes. These objects are real and supposedly at the center of most galaxies in the universe. Although, it took our civilization 50 years to recognize reality and consider this scientific theory seriously. The cosmic monsters were replaced by wormholes, the existence of which is now in question, since physicists themselves do not understand whether wormholes should be taken seriously.
How wormholes work
So, according to physical theory, a wormhole resembles a tunnel that can be used for fast space flights from one end of the universe to another. Theoretically, they can not only reduce the distance between galaxies (from millions of years to hours or minutes under the right conditions), but even use them as a time machine.
As our readers probably know, Einstein’s GR is confirmed almost every year, and some scientists are convinced of the existence of wormholes. But there is a small problem with this story: wormholes are extremely unstable. This means that the space-time tunnels cannot remain open for long (for something or someone to pass through).
In 1988, Caltech physicist Kip Thorne suggested that wormholes could be kept open using an exotic form of energy—negative mass matter that repels other (known to us) matter away from itself. For this reason, many researchers believe that tiny wormholes with exotic energy appeared shortly after the Big Bang and became thinner and longer as the universe expanded.
In this case, we are talking about the Casimir effect, which explains the mutual attraction of conducting uncharged bodies under the action of quantum fluctuations in vacuum. It is this negative energy that acts against gravity, keeping the wormhole afloat.
Given the growing interest in wormholes, physicist Luke Butcher of the University of Cambridge concluded that the shape of the wormhole itself is capable of generating Casimir energy.
If the neck of a wormhole is several orders of magnitude longer than the width of its mouth, an exotic energy is created at its center that can keep the wormhole open long enough for a pulse of light to pass through it,” explains Butcher.
And if the mouths of a wormhole can exist at different points in time, then theoretically they are suitable for traveling through space and time. But as much as we would like to discover these objects and travel to other worlds (or across the expanses of the Universe), science is far from translating theoretical equations into physical objects.
This, however, does not prevent wormholes from striking our imagination. Moreover, in a sense, these objects are a delightful form of escapism. Unlike the frightening black holes (which trap anything that gets inside), wormholes could allow us to travel through the ocean of space at faster-than-light speeds.
Has a wormhole ever been found?
The connection of wormholes with quantum theory is also an interesting phenomenon. Since at the micro level everything around us (and ourselves) is made up of atoms and particles, they can appear in empty space only to disappear in a moment. At the same time, a number of recent experiments have shown that quantum information can be transferred from one place to another.
From this point of view, wormholes are like black holes interconnected, experts say.
Fortunately, the fact that quantum physics plays an important role in the existence of wormholes is unlikely to go unnoticed. Of course, so far no one has seen these objects, but this does not mean that space tunnels do not exist in nature.
Ultimately, wormholes could help scientists understand the innermost mysteries of the universe. And, no less interesting, to prove the existence of the Multiverse. Do you think we will find out the answers to these questions in the next 10 years? Share your thoughts, as always, here in the comments to this article!To Read Great Articles, Click Here Follow Us On Facebook Twitter Telegram