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TARDIS: How Does It Work?

The Doctor and his adventures with his companions in the TARDIS traveling through space and time and simply amazing. But have you ever wondered about the science behind this beloved time traveling blue box? We try to uncover the secrets behind the scientific mumbo jumbo of the TARDIS. Read on to find out how it works.

About the TARDIS:

tardis, doctor who, doctor, doktor, time travel
Image Source: Giphy

The full form of the TARDIS is “Time And Relative Dimension In Space“. It is dimensionally transcendental, meaning it’s bigger on the inside than the outside. The interior exists in a different, relative dimension to the exterior. In the very first story it was established that the TARDIS usually changes its exterior appearance on each trip to blend in with its surroundings. The Doctor later stated that it was the broken chameleon circuit that caused it to be stuck in the shape of an old style police box.

How does it work?

Einstein’s theory of general relativity is a proof that space and time are not separate, but are wrapped up in 4 dimensions. The 3 dimensions are that of space, which are our general directions whereas the fourth dimension is time itself. The fourth dimension consists of future and past. The fabric of space time in which all the matter of the Universe exists is formed because of the combination of these 4 dimensions.

tardis, doctor who, doctor, doktor, time travel
Image Source: Disqus

An actual paper was written by Physicists Ben Tippett and Dave Tsang on how the TARDIS time travel might actually be possible. The paper is known as “Traversable Achronal Retrograde Domains In Spacetime” and its short form spells out as, yes you guessed it right, TARDIS! Basically, the TARDIS moves as a bubble of space-time back and forth along a loop of time.

Image Source:
Image Source:

The image above shows a concept of fabric of space and time being folded. It is theoretically possible to fold one of the curves in the fabric of space and time in order for time travel to exist which is called a closed time-like curve. And then of course, the TARDIS also has a lot of other timey-whimey stuff in it.

Is it possible?

Certainly yes, but till the time scientists figure out a way to work around the closed time-like curve, we don’t see this happening for a very long time. Also, when you are dealing with time travel there are many different complexities to deal with, one of the most common ones being: paradoxes. You literally don’t want to be messing with the timeline otherwise it could cause massive aberrations because of the “Butterfly Effect”.

Why don’t we see any time travelers today?

And so, while conceptually cool and quite very much possible in theory, the TARDIS has a long way to go to see it in reality any time soon. But then, do you wonder why you never see any time travelers? Wouldn’t it make sense that if time travel does get invented in the future then we would definitely see some “time tourists”? Or may be our time period isn’t that interesting to witness after all. Who knows? May be Earth gets abandoned in the future.

tardis, doctor who, doctor, doktor, time travel
Image Source: Giphy

So many questions and fascinations but so very little time to figure all out. If only The Doctor would actually come visit us himself, it’d be so cool! But until then, if you liked this post then do share with your friends and leave behind a like and comment.

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Nikhil Malankar
Nikhil is the founder of Tell Me Nothing and has a huge interest in making and playing games. He is also into game development and has written a published book on the same.

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