Physics

World's first magnetic "wormhole" produces magnetic monopole

World's first magnetic "wormho...
Magnetic field lines (in red) leaving a magnet on the right pass through the wormhole, which in terms of magnetism is undetectable
Magnetic field lines (in red) leaving a magnet on the right pass through the wormhole, which in terms of magnetism is undetectable
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The magnetic wormhole device created at UAB
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The magnetic wormhole device created at UAB
Magnetic field lines (in red) leaving a magnet on the right pass through the wormhole, which in terms of magnetism is undetectable
2/2
Magnetic field lines (in red) leaving a magnet on the right pass through the wormhole, which in terms of magnetism is undetectable

It may not instantly whisk you to far-flungreaches of the universe like the gravitational wormholes of Stargate, Star Trekand Interstellar, but researchers at Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona(UAB) claim to have created the first experimental wormhole that links tworegions of space magnetically.

Using metamaterials and metasurfaces, the scientistsfor UAB's Department of Physics created a sphere that from the outside ismagnetically undetectable. The sphere consisted of an external layer with aferromagnetic surface and an inner layer made of a superconducting material,while crossing it from one side to the other and forming a tunnel was acylinder made of a rolled ferromagnetic sheet.

The magnetic wormhole device created at UAB
The magnetic wormhole device created at UAB

Using this arrangement, the magnetic field from amagnet or an electromagnet at one end of the tunnel passes through the "wormhole" undetected and appears at the other end in the form of an isolatedmagnetic monopole, which is something that does not exist in nature.

The research follows on from previous work by the sameteam in 2014 when they built a magnetic fiber capable of transporting amagnetic field from one end to the other. However, the fiber was detectablemagnetically whereas the wormhole is a three-dimensional device that isundetectable by any magnetic field.

Although it isn't in quite the same league as connectingtwo points in spacetime, and the device only creates the illusion of a magnetic field propagating through a tunnel outside the 3D space, the researchers say the technology could have applications in fields where magnetic fields are used,such as medicine. For example, the team suggests the technology could make ispossible to take MRI scans of different parts of the body simultaneously, ormake such scans more comfortable for patients by distancing them from thedetectors.

The team's study was published in the journalScientific Reports.

Source: UAB

9 comments
Johnny Partain
BS. The story is claiming the creation of a magnetic monopole by redirecting the path of magnetic flux. It looks more like a modified coil. But the scientists can prove their claim by simply manufacturing a self energized magnetic motor, since its always been the flow of flux which has defeated its creation.
Neil Farbstein
That's like saying a strip line microwave waveguide is a space warp because it takes out the third dimension from transmitting microwaves. Also, the magnetic fields are not transmitted instantaneously at warp speed. They are transmitted at C, or under.
Bob Flint
This seems sort of a signal transmission cloaking device?
DouglasGrubich
What might be useful about the magnetic "wormhole", if the tech matures -- it could shorten the amount of time between Earth communicating with a deep space probe. A series of these magnetic wormholes devices could be sent up. Real-time communicating with a Martian Colony would be possible, without waiting long intervals.
JaxCavalera
Douglas Grubich knows exactly where this story sits in terms of reality. Yep that's exactly where the problem lies with those type of generators and if their device can in fact provide true flux shielding as described then yeah.. they should be able to make self perpetuating magnetic generators... unless of course the energy required to achieve this wormhole is way more than could be generated from such a design.. or if it simply requires commensurate energy to redirect the flux as you could obtain from that application.
Lifeform
This is a strange one. Considering Paul Dirac's work on the existence of monopoles, and produced synthetically last year (https://www.amherst.edu/news/faculty/node/532493), and requiring a Bose-Einstein condensate, this seems a little too good to be true in terms of monopoles being developed in your back garden shed, quantum or otherwise. However it would be possible under certain weather conditions (where high energy alternating electrostatic/electromagnetic fields occur), to experience naturally generated magnetic tunnels with properties similar to monopoles. Place an aircraft in that type of tunnel would bring a whole new meaning to air travel. But I think monopole for this article title is a little stretched!
Bob
Ok, I'm a little rusty on my E&M but this looks like conducting the lines of flux from a permanent magnet through a ferromagnetic core and shielding it with a ferromagnetic shell. The superconducting inner core would form a magnet with opposite polarity giving the appearance of an overall object with the same polarity on both ends with no field detected in the middle. Wormhole? Not unless you can move the components great distances apart and maintain the flux strength.
iperov
cool, lets create warp-drive
greenace92
This effect occurs in the real word between our Earth and the Sun.
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/mag-portals.html