# Folding space

1. Oct 5, 2005

### Seeruk

I don't know if I am posting this in the right section, I am still figuring these boards out.

Could someone explain the concept of the folding space theory? I did some research, but I would like others views on the topic.
-Seeruk

2. Oct 5, 2005

### pervect

Staff Emeritus
"Folding space theory" sounds like science fiction to me, not real physics. Where did you hear about it?

3. Oct 5, 2005

### robousy

I think you mean wormholes.

You are probably thinking of the popular anaology of folding a piece of paper over and being able to travel from one side of the paper to the other by traversing a hole in the folded piece of paper.

If you are interested in faster than light propulsion then also look up the alcubierre warp drive as well as wormholes.

4. Oct 5, 2005

### Staff: Mentor

Not sure if that's what Seeruk is talking about, though...

5. Oct 5, 2005

### εllipse

Possibly from A Wrinkle in Time too? It's been a long time since I read that though.

6. Oct 5, 2005

### robphy

..and Dune, I believe.

7. Oct 6, 2005

### robousy

lol.

Spice extends life...
Spice expands consciousness.

8. Oct 6, 2005

### Jimmy Snyder

Are we talking folding space or folding spice?

Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
9. Oct 6, 2005

### Trilairian

In for example Schwarzchild black holes one of the coordinate transformation equations relating Schwarzchild coordinates of space and time (t,r) to Kruskal-Szekeres coordinates of space and time (t',r') for our region external to the event horizon is
tanh(t/4GM) = t'/r'
but for the interior is
tanh(t/4GM) = r'/t'
(c=1)
The space and time coordinates actually switch places which can be interpereted as space and time folding over at the event horizon.

10. Oct 6, 2005

### Seeruk

Folding space and Stephen Hawking

I first heard about folding space in a Hawking's paper (can not remember site ), but this site says a little about it. A concept they do not really cover is this:

You take a section of space, you want to travel from point A to point B. Unfortunately for you, between the points the d = 123 light years ( made up number ) A normal human could never make this trip in their one life span, so what do we do? Fold space so that point A and point B cross each other.
Thus the distance would only take 52 light years ( again made up number ).

A-----------------------------------------------B
<---- 123 light years ---->

\---- B <--- 52 light years ---> A----/
\------------------------------------/

Sorry there really is not a way to express curvature / and \ = curves where space folded. The link shows a better picture...

http://www.slais.ubc.ca/courses/libr500/04-05-wt1/www/b_ballantyne/science_fold.htm [Broken]

Last edited by a moderator: May 2, 2017
11. Oct 6, 2005

### robousy

Ooooooooooooooh.

THAT space folding.

Yup, nasa built one of those devices years ago.
They didn't think it was much use at the time though as they had more important things on their mind than exploring the cosmos like the ISS.

You can pick up the Space Time Drive (or STD) on ebay for a few hundred bucks these days. Its more expensive though if you pay in chinese yen.