Physicist Ron Mallett has been obsessed with time travel and building a time machine for decades. Credit: BBC

This Astrophysicist Thinks He Can Actually Build A Working Time Machine

Will time-traveling become possible in the near or distant future? An astrophysicist claims he has written an equation that could be the foundation for building a working time machine.


What would you do if you had a working time machine? Would you go back to a moment when you made a mistake and turn yourself to a different path? Or will you go centuries back in time to a period in history that you have always wanted to see for yourself?

People like me often theorize about what would happen “IF”. At the same time, even with a million scenarios in my head, I will probably not know what to do if these fantasies become reality.


When it comes to time machines, it seems we may be a step closer than previously thought.

According to Ron Mallett, astrophysicist, and professor at the University of Connecticut, he has written an equation that could be used for the construction of a real time machine.

Moreover, he apparently even built his own prototype which is unfortunately not shown publicly.

Even with the physical prototype of his “time machine”, his colleagues do not share his positive outlook on the possibility of building a working time machine.

Mallett’s Theory & Time Machine Prototype

It all begins with the work of a genius – Albert Einstein. As long as you understand his theory of special relativity, you will understand Mallett’s ideas.

In case you haven’t heard this theory – it suggests that the speed of time depends on the speed of a moving object.

As an example, imagine you were traveling at extreme speeds in space, close to the speed of light but at the same time, imagine a second person who is on Earth at the same time.


For you, time would decelerate and pass slower in comparison to the person in regular conditions on Earth.

If you travel at this high speed for a certain period and return to Earth, let’s say a couple of weeks later, what will happen? What you would have felt like 2 weeks would equal 20 years for the people on Earth. It does sound like time travel, does it not?

Then, Mallett mentioned another theory – the general theory of relativity, again by Einstein. Simply said, time passes slower when gravity is stronger.

Ronald Mallett and his small prototype of a time machine with lasers. Credit: CNN
Ronald Mallett and his small prototype of a time machine with lasers. Credit: CNN

Taking this theory into consideration, Mallett suggests that if space can be bent, why shouldn’t we consider that space can be twisted purposedly?

He believes that time travel could be possible if we find a way to twist time into a loop. Most experts are not convinced that time traveling to the past is possible but Mallet suggests it could be solved with lasers.

Although he built a prototype using lasers, Mallett also admits that his work is entirely theoretical and there is no guarantee that it will ever work. Even if it does, he admits that it may never be possible to send a human back in time.

As I mentioned above, his peers are definitely not convinced in his work and say that there are a lot of flaws in his work.

“I don’t think [his work is] necessarily going to be fruitful,” astrophysicist Paul Sutter told CNN, “because I do think that there are deep flaws in his mathematics and his theory, and so a practical device seems unattainable.”

In the end, time machines and travel will, for now, remain a theory and a distant possibility. And still, Mallett has spent decades researching time travel and it is good to know that he is making some kind of progress. In the end, even if it never becomes possible to send a human back in time, even the ability to send a small object will be a breakthrough for science.


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Houser, K. (2020, January 02). Astrophysicist says he knows how to build a time machine.

Street, F. (2019, December 31). Meet the scientist trying to travel back in time.

Written by Vladislav Tchakarov

Hello, my name is Vladislav and I am glad to have you here on Curiosmos. As a history student, I have a strong passion for history and science, and the opportunity to research and write in this field on a daily basis is a dream come true.

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