Wormhole or Einstein-Rosen Bridge is a hypothetical cosmic tunnel which serves as a shortcut or interconnection between widely separated regions of space and time. Some cosmologists have conjectured that wormholes could allow time travel and they may connect two parallel universes with black holes as their openings.

Speaking generally, wormholes are just the work of science fiction and with the present day technology, it is impossible to create a gravitational wormhole. However in electromagnetism, it has been proven experimentally achievable and physicists at Department of Physics at the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona have created magnetic equivalent of a wormhole that can connect two regions of space magnetically.

So what do you think the physicists did? Well, they made a tunnel that allows the magnetic field to disappear from one side and then reappear on the another side.

The researchers used magnetically cloaked ferromagnetic and superconducting components to build the spherical wormhole so that the sphere is magnetically undetectable or invisible from the outside.

“You see the apparatus with your eyes,” but magnetically it is undetectable. It is like the field lines have gone through another spatial dimension,” says the lead researcher, Àlvar Sánchez.

The image on the LEFT is the illustration of the device and how it would appear to us. The image on the RIGHT is the appearance from a magnetic point of view.

an illustration of magnetic wormhole created by physicists

The team also used metamaterials and metasurfaces to build the tunnel, so that the magnetic field from a source, such as a magnet or an electromagnet, appear at the other end of the wormhole as an isolated magnetic monopole – a hypothetical magnetic particle with a single magnetic pole. This resulted in some kind of illusion in which magnetic field appears to travel from one point to another through a dimension that happens to be outside the conventional three dimensions.

Unlike gravitational wormholes, the magnetic wormhole cannot serve as a shortcut to travel through widely separated regions of space and time, but it is analogous to gravitational wormhole in every way.

Àlvar Sánchez explains that ” it changes the topology of space, as if the inner region has been magnetically erased from space.”

Their previous attempt in building a magnetic fiber, a device capable of transporting magnetic field from one end to the other, was magnetically detectable. However, it laid the foundation in the development of a new magnetic wormhole which is undetectable by any magnetic field.

The device, as researchers stated, could prove useful in applications such as MRI – potentially allowing simultaneous imaging of different parts of the body.

“Our main motivation was scientific,” says Sanchez, “but since magnetic fields are used in so many different things, our device could have many potential applications.”

[Image: edobric via ShutterStock]