Time Travel and Warp Drives: A Scientific Guide to Shortcuts Through Time and Space

Allen Everett and Thomas Roman. Univ. of Chicago, $30 (280p) ISBN 9780226224985
Everett, Tufts Univ. Emeritus Professor of Physics, and Roman, Professor of Mathematical Sciences at Central Connecticut State, have teamed up "to write a book for people with different levels of math and physics" that explores the assumptions that make science fiction books and films so much fun. Crucial to such futuristic science are the possibilities of time travel and travel at speeds faster than light. The professors ponder the paradoxes that can arise within these scenarios: a voyage to the past in which the traveler kills his own grandfather or the case of twins who age at different rates when one travels at near-light speeds while the other remains on earth. They also explore the potentials of wormholes and warp bubbles in space that could allow vehicles to exceed "the maximum space-time speed limit," and how the existence of parallel universes might resolve some time-travel paradoxes. A delightful and informative book for science buffs, it concludes with five appendices for readers who wish to pursue these ideas in greater depth. (Dec.)

Reviewed on: 12/05/2011
Release date: 12/01/2011
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