Sunday, March 23, 2008

The UFO Phenomena -“Religion or Science”?

Shutterstock_2312404_2_3 Is the world’s fascination with the possibility of UFOs and more a religion or a natural intuitive sense that life is “out there” based on current scientific research and recent planet-search discoveries?

One of the world’s preeminent astrophysicists, Carl Sagan, believed that “the interest in unidentified flying objects derives, perhaps, not so much from scientific curiosity as from unfulfilled religious needs.”

No one could have foreseen the extent to which the idea of would pervade popular culture prior to the publication in 1897 of H.G. Wells War of the Worlds (see video below) and Kurd Lasswitz’s On Two Planets –both the vanguard of an enormous number of treatments of the alien theme in science fiction.

The modern UFO era and the birth of the extraterrestrial hypothesis began on June 24,1947, when Kenneth Arnold, flying his private plane near Mount Rainier in Washington, reported nine disk-shaped objects flying in formation at speeds he estimated to be over 1,000 miles per hour.

Arnold, a respected businessman and deputy U.S. marshal, was taken seriously and his description of the objects as flying “like a saucer if you skipped it across the water” led to newspapers to coin the term “flying saucer.”

The alien hypothesis first officially emerged in 1948 with the Air Force "Project Sign," which concluded that UFOs were of extraterrestrial origin. The report was later declassified and burned by General Hoyt Vandenburg.

If UFOs exist, how do they traverse the universe? According to conventional wisdom, one can only travel through time in a linear fashion at no faster than the speed of light. At that rate, it would take millions of years to traverse the universe, and who has time for that? If there’s a way to manipulate space and time curvatures, then we have all the time we need.

In sync with India’s love-affair with UFO’s, a recent editorial in a popular Indian news site, UFOs, singularity, time folding (and just about every other theory ever proposed) are a complete given. After all, one aspect of quantum physics is that in an alternate universe, anything could happen.

While several advanced theories do have some solid ideas to back them up, others seem a bit far-fetched—even for those willing to accept that there may be upwards of twenty-six dimensions, rather than the standard four. So what current theory is the most likely to someday satisfactorily explain the science of UFO’s?

Though it may seem like pure fiction, it is commonly accepted that wormholes are possible within the framework of general relativity. Although folding space has yet to be documented, there continues to be a healthy debate in the scientific community about their possible existence. If they do exist, it would explain how something or someone could traverse huge distances very quickly. Stephen Hawking gave a lecture, which discussed the possibility of wormholes in folding space. The implications of human travel through these wormholes could result in “short-cutting” through vast distances and even time itself.

According to this idea, one could even move faster than the speed of light. Professor Hawking puts it this way, “If you can travel from one side of the galaxy, to the other, in a week or two, you could go back through another wormhole, and arrive back before you set out.”

While a bit unfathomable, a similar type of “time travel” has already been demonstrated. Scientists who studied passengers on space shuttles have found that, because of the shuttle’s high speed, time moved more slowly for those on board.

So, what is a wormhole? Simply put, “masses that place pressure on different parts of the universe could eventually come together to form a tunnel.” Wormholes are also referred to as “Einstein-Rosen bridges”, and are related to Einstein’s theory of special relativity, and the space-time continuum.

While scientists currently have no realistic method of finding a wormhole (nor proof that they even exist), there is no reason why they couldn’t. In fact, their existence would certainly help make sense of some current paradoxes in the world of physics. While the answers aren’t quite here yet, the questions are being asked. If wormholes are proven to exist, the possibilities will be literally endless.

Original here

No comments: