THESE MAGNIFICENT MEN WITH THEIR TIME MACHINES!
Ronald Mallett's RING LASER: The idea behind Mallett's time machine is based on Einstein's General Theory of Relativity. In short, Mallett believes that he can get a array of laser beams configured in such a way that the laser light will rotate around in a cylinder fashion, creating enough of a gravitational effect that it will cause space and time to rotate around in a loop, creating what physicists call "closed time-like curves". This will allow a neutrino particle that enters the array to loop around with the curves and go back in time.
Mallett has published two key papers in regards to his idea. The first, Weak Gravitational Field of Electromagnetic Radiation of A Ring Laser, states in part that:
"In Einstein's general theory of relativity, both matter and energy can create a gravitational field. This means that the energy of a light beam can produce a gravitational field. My current research considers both the weak and strong gravitational fields produced by a single continuously circulating unidirectional beam of light. In the weak gravitational field of a unidirectional ring laser, it is predicted that a spinning neutral particle, when placed in the ring, is dragged around by the resulting gravitational field".
In his second paper, Gravitational Faraday Effect Produced by a Ring Laser, Mallett was joined by D. E.Cox, J. G. O'Brian, and C. Roychouhuri who said in part:
"Using the linearized Einstein gravitational field equations and the Maxwell field equations it is shown that the plane of polarization of an electromagnetic wave is rotated by the gravitational field created by the electromagnetic radiation of a ring laser. An experimental arrangement is suggested for the observation of this gravitational Faraday effect induced by the ring laser".
Mallett's third paper continued his exploration of the gravitational effects of light - The Gravitational Field of a Circulating Light Beam in which he states in part:
"For the strong gravitational field of a circulating cylinder of light, I have found new exact solutions of the Einstein field equations for the exterior and interior gravitational fields of the light cylinder. The exterior gravitational field is shown to contain closed timelike lines.
The presence of closed timelike lines indicates the possibility of time travel into the past. This creates the foundation for a time machine based on a circulating cylinder of light."
So Mallett has a sound basis from which to begin his machine. He was able to get a provisional patent on his design for a rotating laser ring time machine but there is no word as to whether of not he followed through in filing a full patent application afterward.
Despite the solid basis for his theoretical work, there have been objections from a few in the physics community. The following is from Wikipedia.org:
"In a paper by Ken Olum and Allen Everett the authors claimed to have found problems with Mallett's analysis. One of their objections is that the spacetime which Mallett used in his analysis contains asingularity even when the power to the laser is off and is not the spacetime that would be expected to arise naturally if the circulating laser were activated in previously empty space. Mallett has not offered a published response to Olum and Everett, but in his book Time Traveler he mentions that he was unable to directly model the optical fiber or photonic crystal which bends the light's path as it travels through it, so the light circulates around rather than moving in a straight line; as a substitute he chose to include a "line source" (a type of one-dimensional singularity) which would act as a "geometric constraint", bending spacetime in such a way that the light would circulate around on a helix-shaped path in a vacuum (for an older solution involving an infinite cylinder which creates CTCs, in this case due to the cylinder's own rotation rather than light circulating around it, see the Tipler cylinder). He notes that closed timelike curves are present in a spacetime containing both the line source and the circulating light, while they are not present in a spacetime containing only the line source, so that "the closed loops in time had been produced by the circulating flow of light, and not by the non-moving line source."However, he does not provide any additional argument as to why we should expect to see closed timelike curves in a different spacetime where there is no line source, and where the light is caused to circulate due to passing through a physical substance like a photonic crystal rather than circulating in a vacuum due to the curved spacetime around the line source.
Another objection by Olum and Everett is that even if Mallett's choice of spacetime were correct, the energy required to twist spacetime sufficiently would be huge, and that with lasers of the type in use today the ring would have to be much larger in circumference than the observable universe. At one point Mallett agreed that in a vacuum the energy requirements would be impractical but noted that the energy required goes down as the speed of light goes down. He then argued that if the light is slowed down significantly by passing it through a medium (as in the experiments of Lene Hau where light was passed through a superfluid and slowed to about 17 metres per second) the needed energy would be attainable. However, the physicist J. Richard Gott argues that slowing down light by passing it through a medium cannot be treated as equivalent to lowering the constant c (the speed of light in a vacuum) in the equations of General Relativity, saying:
One has to distinguish between the speed of light in a vacuum, which is a constant, and through any other medium, which can vary enormously. Light travels more slowly through water than through empty space, for example, but this does not mean that you age more slowly while scuba diving or that it is easier to twist space-time underwater.
The experiments done so far don't lower the speed of light in empty space; they just lower the speed of light in a medium and should not make it easier to twist space-time. Thus, it should not take any less mass-energy to form a black hole or a time machine of a given size in such a medium.
Later, Mallett abandoned the idea of using slowed light to reduce the energy, writing that, "For a time, I considered the possibility that slowing down light might increase the gravitational frame dragging effect of the ring laser ... Slow light, however, turned out not to be helpful for my research."
Finally, Olum and Everett note a theorem proven by Stephen Hawking in a 1992 paper on the Chronology Protection Conjecture, which demonstrated that according to General Relativity it should be impossible to create closed timelike curves in any finite region that satisfies the weak energy condition, meaning that the region contains no exotic matter with negative energy. Mallett's original solution involved a spacetime containing a line source of infinite length, so it did not violate this theorem despite the absence of exotic matter, but Olum and Everett point out that the theorem "would, however, rule out the creation of CTC's in any finite-sized approximation to this spacetime."
Another issue that Mallett faces is funds. He needs in excess of $250,000 at last count, just to complete the basic apparatus in order to conduct his first level experiments. So far, all images that you see of his ring laser is actually a model on a different scale than required to conduct his experiment. He has set up a foundation to accept donations of money and even securities to help in the effort. In the spirit of sportsmanship and fair competition, we are providing this link to the page on his site where if you wish, you can donate to help Mallett and his cause. After all, his opponent is daunting, claims to have a better knowledge of time travel concepts than anyone in the world and has a working machine that is approaching the 1st stage requirement to become a time machine, and has professionals who believe he has what it takes to get the job done. He's in the next column over - Marshall Barnes.
Marshall Barnes' VERDREHUNG FAN(TM) is a breakthrough approach beyond the imagination's of mainstream physicists, a fact for which Marshall is completely unapologetic. "Imagine that its 1923, and Edgar Buckingham of the US National Bureau of Standards is saying that jet engines wouldn't be economically competitive with prop driven aircraft at the low altitudes - that "there does not appear to be, at present, any prospect whatever that jet propulsion of the sort here considered will ever be of practical value, even for military purposes." Yeah, well that's exactly where most mainstream physicists are with time travel theories outside of general and special relativity. Time and time again you'll see people like Ed Farhi saying they know that some parts of relativity allow for time travel to the future but that going the other way is close to impossible. The key is that they aren't looking for any other way. Imagine if everyone believed what Ed Buckingham said about the jet engine and never financed any further research into jet propulsion. That's how ludicrous mainstream physicists can be when it comes to time travel".
Despite what Marshall may say about mainstream physicists and time travel, his research is not part of the lunatic fringe. His theory is based on his already successful research into specially synthesized electromagnetic fields, an area out of which he has derived a number of useful applications - from capturing previously filtered or out of range communications signals through a TV set, to nonlethal audio weapons. His greatest discovery, however was how to synthesize the STDTS signal which can produce an electromagnetic field that contracts space as it moves through space, thus providing a form of acceleration that fits the definition for warp drive. Like Mallett, there is a connection here to Einstein but not based on General Relativity but his unfinished unified field theory of electromagnetism and gravity.
Many physicists have their history wrong when it comes to Einstein and the unified field theory - they believe that Einstein was trying to unite all the forces of nature. It was only electromagnetism and gravity. In a conceptual context known as distant parallelism or teleparallelism the electromagnetic force could be seen as coupled to the gravitic force and so could display a gravitic effect. The result would be an effect that would require tremendous amounts of energy to achieve if one were only dealing with his General Theory of Relativity. The STDTS seem to exhibit exactly those kinds of characteristics.
It is the STDTS which is the engine for what Marshall now calls the Verdrehung Fan(TM), a high velocity fan that is driven to higher velocities because of the STDTS signal being applied to the housing for the motor which then sends the signal not to the motor but the axel which then becomes an electromagnetic field that spreads to the fan blades. As those blades rotate, that field contracts the space as they move through it, thus making the blades spin faster. The original thinking was that the space would begin to spin as it was contracted and the cumulative effect could get so extreme that a Cauchy horizon would appear, however, that's not what happened and for an understandable reason - the configuration of the fan blades themselves.
The width of the blades become thinner as they reach the axis and the space between them becomes larger. The space that is being contracted and moving toward the center suddenly expands outward again, escaping through the larger space between the blades close to the axis. As a result, although anomalous effects have been seen and filmed, there is a limit, a point of equilibrium similar to that point where water flowing into a bucket with a hole will begin to build up inside the bucket, despite the hole, depending on how fast the water flows. But if it doesn't flow fast enough, the water will only reach a certain level in the bucket which will be maintained as long as the water flows at the same rate. There are overflow prevention holes in many sinks that work on the same principle. However, if the gaps between the blades are reduced or removed, and the power increases, the Verdrehung fan will begin to produce a new level of effects, moving it closer to producing closed time-like curves and even extreme torsion effects that could open holes in space and time. Sound too fantastic to be real? You do the math - currently the maximum power output being used is around 50 watts. Marshall can currently scale up the output to 14,000 watts if he needs to. That's nearly THREE HUNDRED TIMES what he's using now. Verdrehung means torsion in German, and torsin means to distort by twisting. Marshall intends to twist space and time until it causes loops and perhaps even tears and shearing effects, that will make make wormholes possible. This is an entire area of physics that most physicists don't consider because Einstein never finished his unified field theory and so physicists don't attempt any physical research in that direction. They are too reliant on their mathematics to do any nut and bolts experiments.
Physicist John Gribben recognized that it's the engineers who will have the solutions to time machines - not physicists. In his article, Why Time Travel Is Possible, he said:
"So self-consistency is a consequence of the Principle of least action, and nature can be seen to abhor a time travel paradox. Which removes the last objection of physicists to time travel in principle -- and leaves it up to the engineers to get on with the job of building a time machine".
Vannevar Bush, engineer and scientist, who chaired the National Defense Research Committee during World War II, said:
“If scientific reasoning were limited to the logical processes of arithmetic, we should not get very far in our understanding of the physical world. One might as well attempt to grasp the game of poker entirely by the use of the mathematics of probability”.
Marshall is very much a student and product of the early to mid 20th century. He believes in the myth of the rugged individual, the genius inventor and the self-made man, because he knows the stories of why they aren't myths. He's not a scientist working in some institution that must kowtow to administrators and a level of peer pressure that makes high school cliques look like mutual admiration clubs. He's an engineer that's in the business of developing products and ideas and the only thing that matters is if they'll work and make money - not if they've been published in some paper first. In fact, some wouldn't qualify to be published because, trade secrets and proprietary constraints, would prevent much of what would be customary for publication from being revealed! Marshall points to the Vannevar Bush quote and same proclivity among physicists - to rely too much on the known and the mathematical principles of their field, while ignoring the direct exploration of the physical world, as the reason why he is ahead of men like Mallett in the race to discover the mysteries of time and space - and will win the race to build the first time machine.
UPDATE! DECEMBER 20TH: MARSHALL BARNES'
VERDREHUNG FAN(TM) MEETS
1ST STAGE REQUIREMENT TO BECOME A
Leaping even further ahead of Ronald Mallett, Marshall Barnes increased the power of the Verdrehung Fan(TM) resulting in the warping effect happening sooner. This not only proves that the increased velocity of the fan is due to the STDTS(TM) field strength, which acts on space itself, but that it is only a question of power and the device will eventually warp time too. These are the conditions set by Mallett, and Marshall is meeting them, one step at a time!