June 18, 2013
Throughout the years, science fiction has filled our minds with many wonders. Every child at some point has imagined being able to have one of the abilities movies and TV shows always portray. One of the most characteristic of those wonders is the ability to teleport, in a matter of milliseconds, from one place to another. But could this actually be possible?
Depending on the story you are focusing on, teleportation is portrayed shown to be done in different ways. Let us focus on the most common form of teleportation, as seen in the Star Trek serious, by standing on a platform and then having all your atoms disintegrated and resembled on another platform.
The theory behind this type of teleportation is that an extremely strong and precise ray would capture and analyze every single atom in your body, then it would separate them, and then send the information to the other platform and then put you and your trillions and trillions of atoms back together exactly as you were before. Doesn’t sound too hard right? Well, every single one of your atoms would have to be in the exact same place, if even one atom was a hundredth of a millimeter out of place, you could be reconstructed with a psychological or physical deformity.
Now, this raises a lot of theories on what would happen to the person as they were teleported. As one of my favorite scientists, Michio Kaku, puts it, when your atoms are ripped apart and moved from one side to another, technically you die. The original you is completely destroyed and the new thing being formed in the other platform is just an identical copy. Teleportation kind of works like a fax machine; you input information on one end, then input a location to send the information to, and in that location it reconstructs everything you put into the fax machine, but the original didn’t go anywhere.
Some people worry about the whereabouts of the human soul in this whole process and the ethics of teleportation. My stand on teleportation is that it is well worth it. I mean, yeah, technically, your body is being zapped and disintegrated, but only for a brief moment. And then when you are put back together, you will be in a completely different place that could take hours to get to; or if traveling to another planet, galaxy, or even maybe universe, it could take years to get to.
My only concern with teleportation is the same with copies; after you start making copies of copies over and over again, sometimes your final product is a lot fainter then the original. So, maybe when we do discover how to teleport people, you will have to wait a bit between two teleportations. I’m sure, however, we will eventually figure out all the glitches to teleportation.
Image Credit: Thinkstock.com