Scientists from the University of Queensland have used photons, which are single particles of light, to simulate quantum particles moving through time. The research is state-of-the-art, and the results could be big!
The research is state-of-the-art, and the results could be big! Their research, called “Experimental simulation of closed time-like curves,” is in the latest issue of Nature Communications.
The grandfather paradox says that if a person went back in time, he could accidentally stop his grandparents from meeting, which would mean that he would never be born. But if he hadn’t been born, he wouldn’t have been able to go back in time at all.
Einstein’s theory of relativity and the solution to it, the Godel metric, are mostly to blame for the paradoxes. What makes relativity work There are two parts to Einstein’s theory of relativity: general relativity and special relativity. Special relativity says that space and time are both parts of the same thing, which is called the “space-time continuum,” and that time can slow down or speed up depending on how fast you are moving relative to something else.
Gravity can also bend time, and Einstein’s theory of general relativity suggests that it would be possible to go back in time by following a space-time path, which is a closed time-line curve that returns to the starting point in space, but at an earlier time. In 1991, it was thought that quantum mechanics could solve some of the problems caused by Einstein’s theory of relativity. This is because quantum particles almost act like they don’t belong in physics.
“The question of time travel is at the intersection of Einstein’s theory of general relativity and quantum mechanics, which are two of the best physical theories we have but don’t agree with each other. Einstein’s theory describes the world on a very large scale, like stars and galaxies. Quantum mechanics, on the other hand, is a great way to describe the world on a very small scale, like atoms and molecules. Martin Ringbauer, who is getting his PhD at UQ’s School of Mathematics and Physics and is the paper’s lead author, said this.
In two different situations, the scientists tried to model how two photons would act when they came into contact with each other. In the first case, one photon went through a wormhole and then talked to an older version of itself. In the second case, a photon moves through normal space-time and interacts with another photon that is stuck inside a closed time-line curve forever.
“Quantum particles have “fuzzy” or uncertain properties to begin with, so this gives them enough wiggle room to avoid time travel situations that don’t make sense,” said Professor Timothy Ralph, who was also a co-author on the paper. “Our research shows where and how nature might act differently than what our theories say it should,” Small quantum particles have been used to simulate time travel, but it may not be possible to do the same with bigger particles or atoms, which are groups of particles.