Scientists are suggesting that manipulating gravity may not be just science fiction. In fact, a mathematically-supported proposal suggests that researchers could turn on and off gravitational fields at will with current technology. The proposal suggests using superconducting electromagnets to generate an artificial gravitational field giving humans the ability to control the last of the four fundamental forces on earth.
— Eric Rissman (@ebrissman) January 9, 2016
The Daily Mail reports that scientist André Füzfa from the University of Namur has proposed a plan to take control of the last fundamental force that has remained just out of grasp for humanity, the control of gravity. The four fundamental forces include gravitational, electromagnetic, strong nuclear, and weak nuclear. Gravitational force is the only of the four forces that humans currently have no control over; however, Fuzfa hopes to change that in the near future.
The scientist has proposed a mathematically backed device that would give humans the ability to manipulate gravity by creating artificial gravity fields using electromagnets. Andre notes that the proposed device could be created using current technology and would not break into the realm of “new physics,” or physics that require undiscovered subatomic particles or processes. Instead, Fuzfa says that we have all the technology and knowledge we need to make artificial gravity fields a reality.
“The most widespread source of gravitation is the inertial mass, which produces permanent gravitational fields. At the opposite, electromagnetic fields could be used to generate artificial, or human-made, gravitational fields, that could be switched on or off at will, depending whether their electromagnetic progenitors are present or not.”
Can we use magnetic fields to make and manipulate gravity? https://t.co/8RROjpvmIW
— Will Spencer (@DrMicrobiology) January 9, 2016
Though we already have the technology needed for the proposal, the technology is not cheap. The superconducting electromagnets needed for this type of project would be along the lines of CERN or the ITER reactor, meaning it will come at a hefty price tag. However, Fuzfa says it would be worth cost in the end.
In the full paper called How Current Loops and Solenoids Curve Space-time, Andre expresses his hope that the proposal can be made a reality as it would open doors to a future in which humanity could control artificial gravitational fields, which would be a huge step in the study of Physics as a whole.
“Such a detection of the space-time curvature generated by a magnetic field in laboratory would constitute a major step in physics: the ability to produce, detect, and ultimately control artificial gravitational fields. And would this technology be developed, it could lead to amazing applications like the controlled emission of gravitational waves with large alternative electric currents. Gravity would then cease to be the last of the four fundamental forces not under control by human beings.”
The ambitious researcher notes that instead of focusing efforts on observing gravitational fields, physicists should be making attempts to actually get in and control gravity itself as, per his research, it is completely possible on a small scale with the technology currently available. Ultimately, if Fuzfa’s proposal is complete and humanity is able to control gravitational fields, the possibilities for new technology are endless.
I’ve been saying this for years. “Using magnetic fields to make and manipulate gravity” https://t.co/HmLb24jXqU
— Andy Smarick (@smarick) January 9, 2016
What do you think about the idea of scientists finally being able to control all four fundamental forces of earth? Can humanity handle the responsibility? What technological advancements do you think could be made from the ability to control and manipulate gravitational fields?
[Image via AP/Oliver Multhaup]