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While wormholes — and cosmic strings — have yet to be proven to exist, Russian physicists suggest that we could measure their shape by looking at the ripples they leave behind in space-time. Share to Facebook. Tweet This. Share via Email. Into the Wormhole.

Travel through wormholes is possible, but slow

Some assembly required. Also, some components are totally theoretical. Victor Tangermann August 28th Unfortunately, cosmic strings are also not a great travelling companion. Keep up. Subscribe to our daily newsletter.

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I mean, who wants to bother traveling the long-and-slow routes throughout the universe, taking tens of thousands of years just to reach yet another boring star? Not when you can pop into the nearest wormhole opening, take a short stroll, and end up in some exotic far-flung corner of the universe.

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There's a small technical difficulty, though: Wormholes , which are bends in space-time so extreme that a shortcut tunnel forms, are catastrophically unstable. As in, as soon as you send a single photon down the hole, it collapses faster than the speed of light. But a recent paper, published to the preprint journal arXiv on July 29, has found a way to build an almost-steady wormhole, one that does collapse but slowly enough to send messages — and potentially even things — down it before it tears itself apart.

All you need are a couple of black holes and a few infinitely long cosmic strings. In principle, building a wormhole is pretty straightforward.

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According to Einstein's Theory of General Relativity , mass and energy warp the fabric of space-time. And a certain special configuration of matter and energy allows the formation of a tunnel, a shortcut between two otherwise distant portions of the universe. Unfortunately, even on paper, those wormholes are fantastically unstable.

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Even a single photon passing through the wormhole triggers a catastrophic cascade that rips the wormhole apart. However, a healthy dose of negative mass — yes, that's matter but with an opposite weight — can counteract the destabilizing effects of regular matter trying to pass through the wormhole, making it traversable.

OK, matter with negative mass doesn't exist, so we need a new plan. Let's start with the wormhole itself. We need an entrance and an exit. It's theoretically possible to connect a black hole a region of space where nothing can escape to a white hole a theoretical region of space where nothing can enter.

When these two odd creatures join together, they form a brand-new thing: a wormhole. So you can jump into either end of this tunnel and instead of getting crushed into oblivion you just harmlessly waltz out the other side. Oh, but white holes don't exist, either.

Man, this is getting tricky. Since white holes don't exist, we need a new plan.

Through The Wormhole - BBC Science Focus Magazine

Thankfully, some clever math reveals a possible answer: a charged black hole. Black holes can carry an electric charge it's not common because of the way they're formed naturally, but we'll take what we can get. The inside of a charged black hole is a strange place, with the normal point-like singularity of a black hole stretched and distorted, allowing it to form a bridge to another oppositely charged black hole.