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Transcription of one of the many beautiful articles

Will we fly through wormholes or warp drives?

The recent observation of the fourth case of the merging of black holes using gravitational waves shows the beginning of intensive study of these objects. It could lead to the knowledge of the characteristics of their horizons and a breakthrough in the tests of gravitational theories and perhaps the path to quantum gravitation. This knowledge is damned for deciding whether to use a black hole or warp drive for interstellar travel. Let’s look at this topic in more detail. At present, the detection of gravitational waves starts with a breakthrough in our knowledge of black holes. Through black holes, in our analysis cycle of the future of interstellar travel (the last part here) we get to the possibilities that are already outside the area of known physics and so far are purely hypothetical and in the world of sci-fi, such as Star trek. For the movement of the object in the space is applied according to a special theory of relativity limiting speed. At star traveling, the speed of light in the vacuum is not possible. But we know there are objects in the universe that are moving away from us at a speed greater than this speed. These are, for example, clusters of galaxies that are far enough away from us. However, in this case, this surrender is caused by the space. This expansion is described by the Hubble constant, which, according to the last measurement, is about 70 (km/s)/Mpc. The objects in our universe, which are around 14 billion light years away, are moving at a speed greater than the speed of light. This value is approximate because it depends on changes to Hubble constants during the development of space and other conditions. From the observation of a very distant supernova, it was found that the Hubble constant is changing and the expansion of the universe is accelerating. There are experimental reasons for the hypothesis that the universe he extremely quickly at its beginning. This hypothesis is referred to as the inflationary model of the universe. In any case, in our universe, a number of objects are moving away from each other speed and considerably beyond the speed of light. It is so obvious that the movement of the star traveling in the space can not overcome the speed of light, but it is not entirely impossible that there is a possibility of faster linking of two places in space by its modification or finding “abbreviations” using other dimensions. This principle is based on all considerations of the use of black and wormhole or warp.


Wormholes could shorten travel from one place of our universe to another (source Detlev van Ravenswaay/SPL)

Black, white, and wormhole

The hypothetical possibility of overlighting travel is to fly through a black hole, and this time it would not be merely ergosferou, as it was considered in the analysis of the possibility of a gravitational sling. For the first time, this possibility was described by Ludwig Flammem in the year 1916 and independently by Albert Einstein and Nathan Rosen in the year 1935 in the Schwarzchild metrics. While at the black hole nothing that gets and is located below the horizon of events, in any case, leave this space, the equation of the general theory of relativity showed a solution that contained objects with the horizon of events, through which it would not be possible to penetrate inside and Everything underneath it should escape from him. These solutions have been marked as white holes. White holes are connected to black wormholes through the singularity. This hypothetical connection is referred to as a wormhole and could provide a shortcut in space. The type of wormhole found by these two physicists is referred to as the Einstein-Rosen bridge or the Schwarzchild wormhole. The spacecraft would have gotten through it to another part of the universe for a time and much shorter than the normal way of space to reach the light. In this case, the principle is not a violation of the speed limit of movement because it is the use of time abbreviation and the direct connection of two different points in space and time. The wormhole could, in principle, combine various časoprostorys, different universes, and could allow travel between them. While the existence of black holes, even several species, we have in the universe confirmed by observation, white holes and wormholes are only hypothetical objects. In addition, a mechanism that allows the emergence of a black hole by collapsing a very material old star, prevents the emergence of a white hole.


The mass falling from the star partner to the black hole creates a accretion disc and produces intense X-rays in this process. In the picture is the X-ray source of Cygnus-X1 in the images of the painter. (NASA/CXC/M. Weiss source)

Studying black holes

The Existence of black holes is now proven directly. At the end of the year 2015, the LIGO detector was able to capture the gravitational waves created by the merging of two black holes (here and here). It was also the first direct observation of gravitational waves, a hundred years from their prediction. Surprisingly, it was a fusion of black holes with unexpectedly large masses that could be observed at a very large distance. In the first recorded case, the objects weighing 36 and 29 were the masses of the sun at a distance of 1.3 billion light years. This confirms the fact that in the rolder phases of the development of the universe there were more stars with more weight. The fourth case was recently recorded, the one at the same time as the VIRGO detector. There are also a number of indirect observations about the existence of star black holes that are the ultimate stage of very material stars. If there is a black hole in the doublestar, in a suitable constellation it can flow through a spiral of mass from the classic star to a black hole, thus creating a accretion disk consisting of an overflowing gas. It should be noted that the complex plasma movement is influenced by the magnetic and electrical fields that arise here. Plasma is accelerated to very high speeds before the impact on the black hole horizon and the interaction of highly accelerated nuclei and electrons creates extremely hot plasma. Within the accretion of the disc, the temperature reaches a value exceeding 10 million degrees Celsius. So hot plasma emits rentgen radiation with high energy. Binaries containing a compact component, which is the ultimate stage star with high weight, are therefore-sources. The first candidate for such a resource became an X-1 Cygnus. The movement of the binaries components can then determine the weight of both components and decide whether the compact component is a neutron star or a black hole. The dominant part of the black holes is, however, lonely and cannot be observed. Their number can only be estimated from the number of very material stars that have this final stage. According to these estimates, there should be tens of millions to billions of black holes in our galaxy.


The supermassive black hole inside the Kvazaru RX J1131-1231 rotates with half the light speed (NASA source).

From indirect observations we know about the existence of supermasive black holes in the centers of galaxies. They have weights of hundreds of thousands to billions of solar masses. The biggest ones are hidden inside the kvasars. They are again mainly caused by radiation arising from the accretion of matter to this black hole. Very turbulent are particularly manifestations of these processes in Kvazarech and active galaxies. There are very intensely shining jets relativistic with moving masses. To determine their weight, it is used to explore the gravitational influence of these compact objects to move the stars in their vicinity. These stars move in such an intense gravitational field that they can also serve to verify the general theory of relativity. The basic difference between stellar and galactic black wormholes is that the density of the supermassive black holes inside the horizon is much lower than that of the stellar ones. At the same time, there is a much smaller gradient of gravity forces around the horizon. The difference gravitying forces on the head and feet of an astronaut who would fall into such a black hole would not be much larger than the Earth’s surface. Unlike the fall into the starry black hole, the cosmonaut would be destructed in the passage through the horizon of the galactic black hole of the tidal force.

Horizon, singularity, fiery wall


Active galaxies Pictor and displayed in X-rays (blue) and on radio waves (red). It’s very nice to see spirt matter from the central supermassive black hole. (Source of Chandra).

As mentioned, the horizon borders the space of a black hole, from which the object with the speed of light cannot skyrocket. Mass below the horizon according to General theory of relativity does not collapsing into singularity, that is, a point with infinite density. It should be emphasized that the singularity merely shows that we are getting into an area of such strong gravitational fields that the theory cannot describe. Realistically, the point with infinite density does not arise. To describe processes in this area of the limit values of gravitational fields, it is necessary to know the quantum theory of gravity, which is not yet built. The effort to combine the theory of gravitation to describe the behaviour of space and quantum physics strikes their incompatibility, which is difficult to overcome and leads to a number of paradoxes. Nevertheless, in the course of previous efforts to incorporate quantum properties into the description of black works, several very interesting processes and events were predicted. One of them is the prognosis of the existence of Hawking radiation. Quantum processes near the horizon cause the black hole to emit radiation with the thermal spectrum. The temperature is inversely proportional to its weight, and the smaller the black hole emits more intensely. Finally, evaporate. However, this does not yet apply to current black holes, which have a mass of stellar or greater. The temperature of their Hawking radiation is lower than the temperature of the background radiation and more radiation is absorbed before the glow.

The Falling cosmonaut

The formation of Hawking radiation can be described in such a way that virtual pairs of particles and particles occur near the horizon of the black hole. But one of them heed over the horizon for quantum uncertainty, leaving a black hole, and the other would fall into it. The energy needed to allow the particles radiated from the black hole to be real is taken from its weight. Another description is that the wave function describing the movement of particles below the horizon extends beyond the horizon. The particles may run over the horizon and may be glowed from the black hole.


Simulation of evaporation of microscopic black holes resulting from LHC emission of Hawking radiation. The accelerator LHC microscopic black holes did not appear, and their existence and existence of hawking rays remain still in the area of hypotheses. (source CERN).

Although the Existence of Hawking radiation has not yet been experimentally confirmed, it is generally assumed. For other predicted processes it’s not that simple. One of the paradoxes arises if the cosmonaut falls into a big black hole, like the galactic. According to the general theory of relativity, the passage of the horizon should not be recorded. By contrast, the laws of physics prohibit the information from our universe from being lost. But when they reach the place of the singularity below the horizon, they disappear from our universe, they are unavailable. Moreover, the general theory of relativity is the principle of a site which means that the action at a distance spreads at the final rate. These three rules cannot be met at the same time and there is something called an informational paradox. To meet the preservation of information and location, there must be a fire wall on the horizon, which creates Hawking radiation. This, however, has a dramatic impact on the object falling into the black hole. And can also influence the course of the fusion of black holes and the progress of the gravitational wave emissions. This is also why they try to manifest the existence of a fiery wall and their properties to search for physicists in the data of experiments LIGO and VIRGO, which have observed already four collisions of black holes. Because there is no more accurate description of the physics around the horizon and the possible properties of the fire wall, it is difficult to find its response in the observed gravitational wave signal. To a large extent, this paradox is linked to the incompatibilities of the general theory of relativity and non local of quantum theory. His solution is also looking at levels of understanding the interconnected (entwined) states of more particles, which is just a manifestation of nen locality and leads to a number of paradoxes in quantum physics (more here). In the year 2013, Leonard Susskind and Juan Maldacena proposed that the interconnected particles are connected to the aforementioned worms wormholes. But it is still an open question of whether this path will lead to a better understanding of quantum theory of gravitation and the interconnection of the general theory of relativity with quantum physics. It is so obvious that events and processes near and below the horizon of events without quantum theory of gravity can not be described and it is therefore clear that we can not yet determine how the actual black holes look and whether there are white and wormhole holes. A big leap in this area could bring the astronomy of gravitational waves, whose era has just begun. Especially the intensive study of a large number of black hole mergers with the utmost accuracy. Accurate analysis of the waveforms and properties of the resulting gravitational wave signals could also allow exploring the properties of the black hole horizon.


On the 14th On August 2017, a fourth detection of gravitational waves formed by the fusion of black holes. Three detectors were detected this time. Two of the American system LIGO and European VIRGO detector. This has enabled the most accurate determination of the source position of the gravitational waves. (Source LIGO – VIRGO Collaboration – Optical Sky Data: A. Mellinger.

Wormhole stabilization

Most of today’s well-known solutions to the Einstein equations of general relativity, which lead to the wormhole joining points in the same space, are unstable, however. They showed it in the year 1962 by John A. Wheeler and Robert W. Fuller. Moreover, the time of their existence is extremely short. It is not enough to fly through the wormhole any object with a speed of less or equal speed of light. This applies to the above-mentioned solutions in Schwarzschild metrics, i.e. Schwarzschild wormholes. To maintain stability long enough for the wormhole to pass something, exotic form of matter is needed. And it is one that has a negative energy density and leads to a high pressure. Such a possibility of keeping the open throat of the black hole was designed by Kip Thorne. The possibility of getting a stable wormhole allowing the transport of objects with underlight speeds within the general theory of relativity showed in the year 1973 independently by Homer Ellis and K. A. Bronnikov. Gradually, within the general theory of relativity, a number of solutions were found leading to stable worm downgrades and possible possibilities for their use to shorten travel between different points of space. Another solution was found in the case of modification of gravitation theory.

Some experimental observations also indicate the real existence of some exotic forms of matter. For example, the relatively recent discovery of accelerating the expansion of the universe discovered by observing the abandonment of the very distant supernova of the first species can be explained using dark energy. It could also explain some other cosmological observations, such as accurate measurements of nonhomogeneity at background radiation temperature. Therefore, the need for other exotic forms of mass needed to stabilize the wormhole might not be a completely insurmountable obstacle. However, it seems very unlikely yet. If this option exists, it is based on some properties of quantum fluctuations of the vacuum associated with the quantum theory of gravity, which we do not yet have. The negative pressure and the energy of the vacuum are also encountered in the case of a Casimir phenomenon, which arises from the extreme approach of electrically charged plates (closer here). It should be noted, however, that the “vacuum energy” often combines highly speculative up to not scientific designs that do not have much to do with reality. As is the case with the microwave (EM) drive.

An even bigger problem may be that utilizing a stable wormhole that connects remote locations in space, leading to problems with passing of time and allowing travel in time into the past. And it is very unlikely that the real world would be allowed to do so. Known is the thought experiment presented by Kip Thorn. It assumes that it creates a wormhole, one end of which is placed in his room and the other on a prepared spacecraft. His wife relocates to interstellar ship. The ship then embarks on a circular journey in a normal spacetime at a speed close to the speed of light, which will last for 12 hours. Kip Thorn still sees his wife through the wormhole, even in principle they can hold hands. When you look at the wormhole, Kip Thorn sees the wife who is doing the departure, the flight itself and the return. All this in twelve hours. But if he looks through the window out of his room, the missile and his wife will return for a much longer time depending on the speed of the interstellar ship. Let’s say speed will be such that a flight of the ship will last for ten years. Kip’s wife can meet Kip Elders for ten years during her re landing on Earth, but also in the passage of a wormhole with the same man after twelve hours. Kip alone can at this point through the wormhole to visit his future self or his future I can visit him.


So far, it seems that the wormholes can ‘t be created in the wild, except for a time very shortly after the creation of the universe. Some hypotheses predict primordial wormholes, but their magnitude is only 10-33 m and their rapid extinction immediately occurs. However, during the expansion of the universe, some of them could be enlarged under specific conditions. However, it is important to emphasize that their emergence is linked to the existence of hypothetical topological disturbances space, which function as a required exotic form of matter. The artificial construction of such objects is most often considered today.

Another critical issue is also the flyby of real spacecraft wormholes. Black holes could be used to create it. The problem, however, is that in this case we have to get under the horizon of black hole events. Any ship that gets under the horizon of events can no longer get past it back. There’s no way back. It’s true whether or not the wormhole is under it. In the case of a star-weight black hole, a possible spacetravel is exposed to a huge gradient of gravitational field that would tear each imaginable structure apart. The smaller the possibility is that the path through the horizon of the starry black hole and the resulting wormhole survived the cosmonaut. It was written about supermassive black holes in the centers of galaxies. In this case, a spacecraft in terms of gravitational influences should overcome the horizon without problems and threats. Moreover, there is the possibility that the aforementioned exotic state of matter would expand its entrance outside the horizon and stabilize its throat, so it would be passable for a long time.

As already mentioned, we do not yet know the quantum description of gravity and we do not know the way it looks like an area that creates a singularity in the general theory of relativity. and also exotic forms of matter that are created in the vacuum under extreme conditions. The behaviour of black holes, hypothetical white holes and wormholes in areas of extreme values of gravitational field cannot be described without knowledge of quantum gravitation theory. Therefore, it can also not be said whether the whites and wormholes can exist. One of the options tested, as this theory might look like, is string theory. However, the study of string theories is currently in crisis and cannot be said when the quantum theory of gravity can be built up.


The warp drive could allow the flight time to other stars (NASA/Marshall Space flight Center) to be shortened.

Warp drive

Yet another hypothetical option for travelling at a speed greater than light is warp drive. This is mainly known from the Star Trek series. It is a hypothetical principle in which an interstellar deforms the spacetime so that the space is shrinking in front of the ship and stretches beyond the ship. It is thus possible to ensure the transfer of a ship from one place in space to another at a speed greater than the speed of light, although in reality it is not about the movement of a ship to a given place, but about such deformation of space, that the desired target will approach us. In principle, we could travel to the stars without leaving the country almost. We wouldn’t travel to Alpha Centauri, but Alpha Centauri would have been transferred to us.

That such travel with the help of a warp drive is an acceptable solution to the equations of the general theory of relativity, showed in the year 1994 the physicist Miguel Alcubierre. However, there is a huge amount of exotic negative energy for its implementation, as well as an extreme amount of normal positive energy. Positive energy would be used to compress the space in front of the ship and negative for its stretching behind it. As in the case of wormholes, we are faced with the problem that, in the case of the possibility of the execution of such a propulsion, it would in principle allow time travel. He showed it to Allen E. Evrett in the year 1996 and it may indicate another problem in assessing the reality of this possibility.

The analysis of Sergei Krasnikov pointed out that a hypothetical warp interstellar ship would not have been controlled by the crew during the flight. The interior of the spacecraft would be separate from the outside world, and the separating border could not exceed any signal. The course of the flight would have to be set in advance and would not change. Yet, in principle, it would be possible to create galactic highways that would connect places in our galaxy, or, if necessary, allow jumps to other galaxies.


Wormholes could ensure travel between different universes (source Nature/MIT, Aldebaran)

Paths between different universes

However, it is necessary to emphasize again that from the point of view of contemporary physics, we do not know the possibility of traveling through a wormhole or warp to reach. Physics, which will show whether nature allows such possibilities, so far we do not know. We know we need to quantum the theory of gravity. Some hints of potential possibilities are observing the behavior of our entire observable universe. We observe that the areas of space are drifting each other with a speed greater than the speed of light. Current observations show that the acquisition of galaxies that are coming beyond our observable horizon is accelerating. It should cause dark energy. Moreover, there are a number of indications that in the very early period of space there was an inflationary period in which the universe (space) he extremely quickly. In principle, it is not possible to exclude the possibility of similar rapid contractions of space, that is, a lot of overworldly approximation of space objects.

One possible solution to the philosophical problems emerging in explaining the basic principles of quantum physics is the hypothesis of the existence of infinitely many parallel universes. A wave function describes the likelihood of a condition being realised. Our particular reality arises through “quantum observation”, which implies the decoherence of the wave function describing the probabilistic state and its collapse, which leads to the choice of a particular option and its realization. Hugh Everett has come up with the assumption that all the possibilities are being realized, but each in another universe. Each decoherence and collapse of the wave function thus means splitting and the emergence of other universes. In every quantum of observation, the space of the collapse of the wave function will result in a fragmentation of the universe, creating an endless sequence of still dividing universes. There are infinitely many parallel universes. Every universe and every history, which is physically permissible, arises. Some of them are almost the same as ours, with some slight deviation. Others can also vary very dramatically. Each of these worlds is equally real.


The artistic idea of how it might look hvězdolet to the warp drive Alcubierriho (NASA source).

The existence of an extremely large number of universes can be explained in cosmologies built not only on string theories to set the parameters of the standard model of mass and interaction, which leads to the possibility of the existence of a sensible being – a person. The standard model, taking into consideration non-zero masses, neutrinos describes at present often with extreme accuracy in addition to the gravitational interaction of all observed phenomena and processes that we can create and observe in labs. There are entities such as dark matter, dark energy, or a singularity of a black hole, which is not enough to explain the standard model. The theory of electroweak interaction will describe a uniformly electromagnetic and weak interaction. Quantum chromodynamics then describes the interaction strong. These two descriptions of the overall three interactions are the components of the Standard Model. A single description of electroweak and strong interaction should ensure the theory of great unification. This should explain the different free parameters of the standard model, which must be part of it. It should then be part of a more general theory, which would include a quantum description of gravity.

For a long time it seemed that the proper way to a uniform description of all four known interactions was string theory. At present, however, this field of physics is struggling with huge problems, which are not only associated with their extreme mathematical demands. The original idea was that among the string theories shucks was one that would automatically lead to the standard model and the values of its free parameters measured in our universe. However, it gradually appeared that there were almost infinitely many string theories that lead to very different universes with physics and very different from the standard model. If we are naturally (without some “space creator”) to explain the emergence and our presence in the universe, which is ideal for our existence, we must assume that there have been infinitely many different universes, with very different physics and parameters standard model. We can then only exist in the one that has the right, for our being appropriate, the physicist.

So again, the hypothesis that there are myriads diverse universes is being promoted. Some are again almost the same as ours. By contrast, others may have physics and thus everything else completely different. Most do not lead to the existence of sentient beings, but a large number contains them. It is thus obvious that the hypothesis of the existence of a vast number of parallel worlds would help us solve a series of not only the philosophical problems that contemporary physics brings. Hypothetical wormholes could then allow travel not only between the different places spacetime our universe, but also between different universes. The American physicist of Japanese descent Michio Kaku thus assumes in his book Parallel Worlds, that future civilizations old millions of years or even hundreds of millions to billions of years will solve the problem of traveling between the universes or even can create new universes. It finds the possibility of leaving the universe, which will cool and lose the conditions for the existence of sentient beings

černá díra

A pair of black holes is a fusion (source of SXS/LIGO).

However, if a similar option exists, it will need an extreme amount of energy and technology that we currently have no idea. But if civilization is not destroyed in the foreseeable future, it could have enough time for research in this direction.


It is evident that, in principle, traveling is at a speed greater than the speed of light, using the modifications of the space possible. If the real use of black holes, wormholes, or warp drives, the question is completely open. In this case, because of our ignorance of quantum gravitation, we do not know whether such options exist at least in principle. The basic difference between the possibilities of interstellar travel, which we have discussed in the cycle of space propulsions, and black wormholes and warp is that the previous ones, do not contradict any physical laws and decide on their use to find the appropriate technology. This includes, for example, a space elevator, where a very intense and interesting discussion took place. In black and wormholes or warps, we do not know the corresponding theories that can describe these phenomena. Thus, we cannot decide whether the nature of these options allows for these possibilities. We have no idea about any necessary technologies. At present, these modes of interstellar travel are purely hypothetical and may prove that even principle do not exist. For the decision we need to build a quantum theory of gravity. For this we can work either through particle physics in the form of signals of a new physicist (for example, by means of a LHC accelerator) or by observing very compact space objects – black holes. There is now a major breakthrough due to the detection of gravitational waves resulting from the fusion of a pair of black holes. It is so possible that we will soon know more in this area.

Written for servers donkey and Kosmonautix.

Author: Vladimír Wagner
Date: 29.09.2017

(… And you don ‘t have to read Nature)

Astronaut with balloon