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Zero Time Space: How Quantum Tunneling Broke the Light Speed Barrier

ISBN: 978-3-527-40735-4
166 pages
March 2008
Zero Time Space: How Quantum Tunneling Broke the Light Speed Barrier (3527407359) cover image
This English edition of a successful, proven title provides a sound scientific background, while allowing a popular presentation of the physics behind the strange and mysterious tunneling process.
Based on his groundbreaking experiments, Prof Nimtz places the topic in a broader context by showing connections with other branches of physics. He and the team of authors begin by introducing such fundamental concepts as space and time and continue with tunneling phenomena from optics, nuclear and solid state physics. Avoiding mathematical equations and definitions altogether, they explain step-by-step the prerequisites for the tunnel effect to function, from classical mechanics to quantum mechanics, right up to modern topics, such as wormholes and space travel la Star Trek.
With a foreword by astronaut Ulrich Walter, science team member of the D-2 Space Shuttle Mission.
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Foreword: Subtle is the Lord IX

Preface XV

1 Introduction 1

1.1 The Tunneling Process 1

1.2 Time, Space and Velocity 6

2 Measures of Time and Space 17

2.1 Measures of Time: Heartbeat, Day and Year 19

2.2 Measures of Length: Foot, Meter and Light Year 21

3 Time in Biology 29

3.1 Perception, Thoughts, Brainwork, Memory 29

3.2 Biological Time Unit 32

4 Velocity 33

4.1 Velocity Definitions 36

4.2 Velocity Measurement 38

4.3 Interaction Processes 43

4.4 Signals 47

4.5 From Galilei via Newton and Einstein to Quantum Physics 51

5 Faster than Light and Zero Time Phenomena 57

5.1 The Tunneling Process: Space with Zero Time 58

5.1.1 The Tunneling Effect 58

5.1.2 Tunneling Time 79

5.2 Photonic Tunneling Structures 86

5.2.1 Double Prisms 88

5.2.2 The Quarter Wavelength or λ/4 Lattice 97

5.2.3 The Undersized Hollow Waveguide 101

5.3 Tunneling Velocity 104

5.3.1 Measuring Tunneling Time with Double Prisms 106

5.3.2 Measuring Tunneling Time with the Quarter Wavelength Lattice 108

5.3.3 Determining Tunneling Time with an Undersized Hollow Waveguide 111

5.3.4 Tunneling: Zero Time in the Tunnel Barrier 112

5.4 Tunneling as a Near-Field Phenomenon 115

5.5 Causality 116

5.6 Non-Locality: Reflection at Tunneling Barriers 120

5.7 Tunneling Particles are Not Observable 124

5.8 Universal Relation between Tunneling Time and Signal or Particle Frequency 125

5.9 Teleportation 129

5.10 Wormholes and Warp Drives 130

6 Summary 137

Bibliography 139

Index 141

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After a diploma in electrical engineering, Günther Nimtz moved to the University of Vienna were he received his doctorate in physics and philosophy. Back in Germany he finished his habilitation in physics and in 1977 accepted a position as research associate at McGill University, Canada. From 1983 until his retirement he held a professorship at the University of Cologne.

Astrid Haibel finished her PhD thesis at the University of Cologne about the topic of Signal Propagation in Photonic Barriers. She is currently working at the Hahn-Meitner Institute in Berlin in the Department of Materials Science.
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"The team of authors sensitively introduces the reader to the world of quantum physics. Nimtz and Haibel explain to the reader step-by-step the prerequisites for the tunnel effect to function. However, in the end they realize that Einstein's Theory of Relativity applies to all processes faster than the speed of light and that it is impossible to design a time machine that would allow changes to the past. On the whole, anyone interested in natural science will really enjoy this book."
(Bettina Schwoch, Associated Press)

"The authors succeed perfectly in presenting the tunnel effect in a readily understandable way, after first defining the basic terms space, time and speed. This work almost entirely without formulas is comprehensible for readers having only a basic knowledge of atomic physics and may be recommended as a supplement to more comprehensive books on the topics."
(Michael Mücke, ekz-Informationsdienst)

" ... this small book presents the latest results on the tunnel effect in a very understandable way, results that do not destroy the scientist's view of the world, but expand it in a surprising way, urging one to think again. I hope this book ... reaches a wide public, not least because it strikingly demonstrates what pure research is and what it can show us."
(H. Baumgärtel, FU Berlin, Zeitschrift für Physikalische Chemie 2004)

"Although this book may sometimes be lacking in scientific depth due to the large amount of interconnections and examples given, it wins in terms of enthusiasm and the urge to research. It is this enthusiasm for physics that this book knows how to strongly convey."
(Kai Dieckmann, Munich, Physik in unserer Zeit 5/2004)

"The team of authors sensitively introduces the reader to the world of quantum physics. Nimtz and Haibel explain to the reader step-by-step the prerequisites for the tunnel effect to function. However, in the end they realize that Einstein's Theory of Relativity applies to all processes faster than the speed of light and that it is impossible to design a time machine that would allow changes to the past. On the whole, anyone interested in natural science will really enjoy this book."
–Bettina Schwoch, Associated Press

"The authors succeed perfectly in presenting the tunnel effect in a readily understandable way, after first defining the basic terms space, time and speed. This work almost entirely without formulas is comprehensible for readers having only a basic knowledge of atomic physics and may be recommended as a supplement to more comprehensive books on the topics."
–Michael Mücke, ekz-Informationsdienst

" ... this small book presents the latest results on the tunnel effect in a very understandable way, results that do not destroy the scientist's view of the world, but expand it in a surprising way, urging one to think again. I hope this book ... reaches a wide public, not least because it strikingly demonstrates what pure research is and what it can show us."
–H. Baumgärtel, FU Berlin, Zeitschrift für Physikalische Chemie 2004

"Although this book may sometimes be lacking in scientific depth due to the large amount of interconnections and examples given, it wins in terms of enthusiasm and the urge to research. It is this enthusiasm for physics that this book knows how to strongly convey."
–Kai Dieckmann, Munich, Physik in unserer Zeit, 5/2004

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