Saturday, May 30, 2009

'This sounds like something out of Star Trek, but Kaku is deadly serious'

Scientists are in search of a "unified theory" to explain how the universe works, or as Einstein said, "to read the mind of God." One controversial possibility is string theory, which suggests tha "an electron is not a dot, but a rubber band which, I vibrated enough times, can turn into every single sub-atomic particle in the universe." (Guardian)

Sounds crazy. Sounds impossible to comprehend, and string theory champion Michio Kaku has been laughed at since the seventies for supporting the idea. But not so much these days. "To theoretical physicists, [string theory] is just about the hottest topic around."

According to Kaku, string theory suggests "the universe is like a soap bubble that is expanding and dying." But it's not the only one. "Our soap bubble co-exists with other soap bubbles."

Not only that, but each universe spawns a new one every time a black hole is created. "The matter being sucked in [by a black hole] may be blown out the other side, creating a white hole in a twin universe, which will expand very rapidly, like our own Big Bang."

How can we get to another universe? "By opening a hole in space and tunneling through a wormhole," says Kaku. In fact, it's the only chance for future civilizations to survive after our universe stops expanding and dies out.

Creating a wormhole would take a lot of energy. What if all we can manage is a microscopic one? Kaku has an answer for that. "We may send a nanobot that can reproduce itself indefinitely and create cloning factories to recreate the dead civilisation through it."

"This sounds like something out of Star Trek, but Kaku is deadly serious."

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I started pound360 to channel my obsession with vitamins, running and the five senses. Eventually, I got bored focusing on all that stuff, so I came back from a one month hiatus in May of 2007 (one year after launching Pound360) and broadened my mumblings here to include all science.