Physicists come up with mathematics to show that time travel is possible

“The math checks out — and the results are the stuff of science fiction,” (Image: Unsplash)

Time travel has long been everyone’s favorite scientific question, and one scientist proved that paradox-free time travel was indeed possible in theory.

In 2020, physics student Germain Tobar, from the University of Queensland in Australia, worked out how to make time travel viable.

“Einstein’s theory of general relativity predicts the existence of time loops or time travel — where an event can be both in the past and the future of itself — theoretically turning the study of dynamics on its head,” Tobar said.

Tobar, an undergraduate student at the time, said that a unified theory that could reconcile both traditional dynamics and Einstein’s theory of relativity was the holy grail of physics.

“But the current science says both theories cannot be true,” he said.

Back to the future time machine

A DeLorean Time Machine replica from the Back to the Future films (Image: Propstore/Mega)

Under the supervision of physicist Dr Fabio Costa, Tobar found a way to “square the numbers” with the calculations that have “fascinating implications for science”.

“The maths checks out – and the results are the stuff of science fiction,” said Dr Costa.

“Say you traveled in time, in an attempt to stop Covid-19’s patient zero from being exposed to the virus. But if you stopped that person from getting infected, that would eliminate the motivation for you to go back and stop the pandemic in the first place,’

“This is a paradox—an inconsistency that often leads people to believe that time travel cannot occur in our universe,”

While some physicists say it is possible, it is logically difficult to accept as it would affect our freedom to do any arbitrary action.

“That would mean you could travel in time, but you couldn’t do anything that would cause a paradox to occur,” Dr Costa said.


Time travel has so far been the stuff of science fiction films (Image: CBS via Getty Images)

The study published in Classical and Quantum Gravity says it is possible for events to align themselves to be logically consistent with any action the time traveler takes.

“In the example of the coronavirus patient zero, you could try to stop patient zero from getting infected, but in doing so you would catch the virus and become patient zero, or someone else would,” Tobar said.

“No matter what you did, the salient events would just recalibrate around you. This would mean that – regardless of actions – the pandemic would occur, giving your younger self the motivation to go back and stop it,’

“Try as you may to create a paradox, events will always adjust themselves, to avoid inconsistency,”

The range of mathematical processes discovered by the researchers showed that free will time travel is logically possible in our universe without any paradox.

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