Saturday, January 9, 2010

Time Travel VIA Time Dialation

Whenever we move to another coordinate in spacetime, our position on the time coordinate changes, even if we don't notice. This causes time to elapse. In everyday life we are always traveling through time. When we travel through space we travel through time by less than we expect. This can be illustrated in the following example:

Imagine 2 twin brothers. On their 30th birthday, one of the brothers goes on a space journey in a really fast rocket that travels at 99% of the speed of light. The space traveler continues on his light speed journey for one year. He than returns to Earth on his 31st birthday. To his surprise, on earth, 7 years have passed, and his twin brother is now 37. This strange scenario is caused by time is stretching by factor 7 at 99% of the speed of light. This means that in the space traveler’s reference frame, one year is equal to 7 years on earth, even though to their perception, time appeared to have passed normally.
The effect of time dilation is negligible for common speeds, like the speed of a car or a fighter jet, but it increases significantly when one approaches light speed.

Time Dilation effects have been experimentally confirmed by using extremely precise caesium clocks that can measure very small periods of time. In today’s reality, time dilation is unattainable to mankind. This is because we have not yet come up with a way of traveling at speeds where time dilation becomes noticeable. Even traveling at supersonic speeds on a jet for a long period of time will not propel you into the future, it’s simply not fast enough. It takes an almost limitless amount of energy to accelerate a spacecraft at the speed of light, which is why this ability is virtually impossible to do(at least in the physical world).

Based on Einstein’s Relativity and the example mentioned earlier, we learn that space and time are independent of human experience. Since our own perception of space and time is bound to a single reference frame, time appears to be constant, linear, and absolute to us. Physics teaches us that this is an illusion and that our perception deceived us within living memory. We are barley able to visualise this spacetime continuum, or deal with it in practical terms, because human consciousness is bound to the human body, which is in turn bound to a single reference frame. We live within the confinements of our own spacetime cubicle.

I have included 2 videos for you to view, it help you get a better understanding of Time Dilation. (The 2nd video is part 2 of another video, you may want to watch part 1 first, part to is featured because this is where they begin talking about Time Dilation about half way in.)

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