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Cosmology & Time Travel

Date: 01-11-10
Host: George Noory
Guests: Sean Carroll, Bert Janssen

Research scientist Sean Carroll spoke about dark matter and dark energy, the physics of cosmology, and the origin of time asymmetry including time travel. By 1998, the major constituents of the universe were known, mass such as planets and stars comprises just 4%, while dark matter is only 23%, leaving 73% as dark energy-- the energy of empty space, he detailed. Multiverses or alternate universes might be connected to our own but have different properties or dimensions, and "there could be another world right next to ours," in a parallel dimension, he said.

As Einstein first theorized, it's possible to travel into the future in a sense. If you leave Earth on a rocket ship traveling at near the speed of light, when you return much less time will have passed for you than people remaining on the planet. Similarly, time will flow at a different rate if you are near a black hole-- "when you come back you will have aged a lot less than the people who have stayed behind," said Carroll.

In discussing the Big Bang, he characterized it as a "moment in time," rather than a point in space. The Oort Cloud, at the perimeter of our solar system, has a trillion comets but most of them are sucked in or deflected by Jupiter and Saturn instead of coming our way, he noted. Yet, space/time can have "bubbles" that grow at the speed of light, a "phase transition" that could not only wipe out life as we know it, but change the laws of physics, Carroll warned. However, the fact that our universe has lasted for 14 billion years, makes this kind of event rather unlikely, he added.

Crop Circle Theories

Last hour guest, crop circle investigator Bert Janssen shared his theories about the enigmatic formations seen in fields. He's concluded that it's humankind's "collective consciousness," possibly from the future or past that is creating the designs. He also discussed a witness to the formations, who described seeing a ball of light floating over a field, and this ball transformed itself into a pancake shape, before the crop circles appeared.

Bumper Music

Bumper music from Monday January 11, 2010

  • Time
    Alan Parsons Project

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