Why we may never want to use this technology

The truth is that teleportation already exists. It was theorized in a 1935 paper written by Einstein and two of his colleagues, Podolsky and Rosen. It was later proven in experiments during the 1990’s. For decades we have known that it is possible, at the quantum level, to teleport particles from one location to another. There are no laws of physics which prevent human beings and objects from dematerializing in a surreal cloud of particles in one location and rematerializing somewhere very distant, somewhere like the slick moon-white ice fields of the Arctic or among the pollen-dusted flowers of the…


What the laws of nature really tell us about free will

Among the greatest mysteries of the universe — dark matter and God, singularities and the beginning of time — there is the question of free will. It is an essential aspect of the human experience, this needing to have control over one’s own destiny and this feeling that all our decisions do matter. Free will contributes to the idea that the future is as yet unwritten and there is still room to create whatever world we want for ourselves. There have been philosophical debates and there have been neurological debates over whether or not we can make conscious decisions.

Perhaps…


Why the Muon g-2 result has dazzled the world in just a couple short weeks

The Standard Model of physics is an ugly, misshapen theory. Where you would expect the ultimate theory of the universe to be streamlined, simple, and beautiful, the Standard Model instead has 36 quarks and anti-quarks, 23 adjustable parameters, and 3 separate generations of particles. It is rugged and far from simple. Yet as unsightly as it might be, it has nonetheless passed test after test for the past 50 years. The Standard Model is one of the most well-tested theories of physics, predicting particles like the Higgs Boson and leading to over 50 Nobel Prizes. The mass of more recently…


The truth is darker than you imagine

Pandora’s box — a term we now use to describe an object which brings great and unexpected consequences — was not a box at all. The original Greek story describes it as a terracotta jar. Pandora herself is, according to the Greek myth, the first woman on Earth. The Gods have bestowed upon her a bounty of blessings to the point where her very name means “the one who bears all gifts”. Nevertheless, it is Pandora who opens the jar, believing it to be filled with more good fortunes from the gods. …


We’re traveling back in time

Almost exactly 31 years ago, the Hubble Space Telescope was launched alongside 5 astronauts on the Discovery space shuttle. Did the engineers and astronomers at NASA know that it would become one of the most productive observational tools in the history of mankind? Did they think it capable of inspiring nearly 13,000 scientific papers in its 3 decades of operation? Hubble painted for us a brand new picture of spacetime — one replete with supermassive black holes and a mysterious phenomenon known now as dark energy. …


And the tragic story of one American boy

Summer of 1994. The potting shed of an otherwise unassuming house gives off the vivid, infamous glow of radiation. Of the area’s 40,000 residents only one woman notices the unnerving wash of light coming from the shed. A foggy glow set against the dark Michigan night. But that woman doesn’t know what’s causing the glow, nor does she suspect that the radiation levels are starting to get so out of control that a Geiger counter has begun detecting higher and higher levels of radiation farther and farther from the house. The radiation is strong enough to seep through concrete. …


Are not what you expect

Of all the ideas we have for faster-than-light exploration — wormholes, hyperdrives, tachyon particles, teleportation — the most promising has always been the warp drive. Promising. But not necessarily realistic. Any idea for faster-than-light (FTL) travel is going to be highly speculative and exotic, especially considering that it’s hard enough as it is to reach 1% the speed of light, much less to surpass it. And what makes warp drives so much more promising than all the others? We’ve assessed, designed, and theoretically gone further with the idea of warp drives than with any other FTL technology. …


A retro sci-fi adventure

I often wonder if the majority of us choose to believe in life on other worlds because of scientific reasons, or sentimental ones. There are, of course, plenty of encouraging numbers about the many Earth-like exoplanets and the many radiating stars around which habitats might form. The odds seem to be in the favor of extraterrestrial life. But then there is the reality of things: the silence, the lack of any evidence that anyone out there is listening at all. How much of our belief in alien life stems from data, and how much of it stems from a desire…


And we might finally be able to detect it

If you search for the universe’s most powerful event, many sources will tell you that gamma-ray bursts are the most energetic explosions outside of the Big Bang itself. They are described as the brightest and strongest explosions in the universe, with some releasing 300 times more energy in a few seconds than our sun will release over the course of billions of years. It makes sense. These bursts of electromagnetic radiation stem from violent objects: black holes, neutron stars, hypernovas. The most explosive, energetic event ever observed is one such gamma-ray burst, discovered by a NASA observatory and releasing 5…

Ella Alderson

Astrophysics student, writer for over a decade. A passion for language and the unexplored universe. I aim to marry poetry and science. ella.aldrsn@gmail.com

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