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Theory: Large Hadron Collider Could Be Used As Time Machine

Large Hadron Collider Time Machine

The Huffington Post   First Posted: 03/17/11 06:26 PM ET Updated: 05/25/11 07:40 PM ET

There's a lot of theories out there about the Large Hadron Collider-- but time travel?

Professor Thomas Weiler and graduate fellow Chui Man Ho are suggesting it's a possibility, and doesn't defy the laws of physics. However, they're very clear to point out that this is just a theory, and it would only involve particles, not human beings.

"Our theory is a long shot," Weiler, who is a physics professor at Vanderbilt University, admitted to the school's research news department, "but it doesn't violate any laws of physics or experimental constraints."

The researchers propose that the Large Hadron Collider (LHC), a 17-mile long particle accelerator in Geneva, Switzerland, could be used to send a theoretical particle back or forward in time, according to LiveScience. That particle, the Higgs singlet, is purely theoretical at this point and is related to another highly theorized (and slightly more well-known) particle, the Higgs boson.

The goal of some experiments done at the LHC is to find the elusive Higgs boson particle. According to the original summary by Vanderbilt's research news department, Weiler and Ho's paper suggests that if the Higgs boson is discovered, the Higgs singlet will also be created.

From Vanderbilt Research News:

According to Weiler and Ho’s theory, these singlets should have the ability to jump into an extra, fifth dimension where they can move either forward or backward in time and reappear in the future or past.

But even if this is achieved, the theory doesn't even suggest full time travel, just the potential ability to send messages back and forth through time, according to LiveScience.

“One of the attractive things about this approach to time travel is that it avoids all the big paradoxes,” Weiler told Research News. “Because time travel is limited to these special particles, it is not possible for a man to travel back in time and murder one of his parents before he himself is born, for example. However, if scientists could control the production of Higgs singlets, they might be able to send messages to the past or future.”

The theory (which can be read in its full scientific glory here) relies on an M-theory or "theory of everything" which unites the cause of all particles. Discovering the Higgs boson particle would be a big step in proving this theory, according to LiveScience.

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