Scientific Journal Claims Interstellar Should Be Shown in Physics Classes

Tuesday, 23 June 2015 - 11:26AM
Physics
Black Holes
Tuesday, 23 June 2015 - 11:26AM
Scientific Journal Claims Interstellar Should Be Shown in Physics Classes
While Interstellar was certainly not without its flaws, there are two aspects of the film that are universally praised: the visual effects, and the scientifically accurate depiction of astrophysical phenomena like wormholes and black holes. According to a new paper, Interstellar should be shown to advanced physics students in order to demonstrate an accurate representation of a wormhole.

Dr. David Jackson, who made the decision to publish this paper in the American Journal of Physics, told BBC News that "publishing this paper was a no brainer."

"The physics has been very carefully reviewed by experts and found to be accurate. The publication will encourage physics teachers to show the film in their classes to get across ideas about general relativity."

The paper claims that, according to current scientific scholarship, traversable wormholes likely don't exist in our universe, as they would collapse so quickly that matter would be unable to pass through them. But, since our space travel technology doesn't allow us to travel the great distances that could take us to exotic places in our universe, wormholes have still become a staple of science fiction, and Interstellar is the most accurate depiction of a wormhole in Hollywood thus far. By using Interstellar's wormhole as a jumping off point, the authors believe professors can both construct diagrams that demonstrate the workings within a wormhole and simply inspire students.

This latter purpose was important to director Christopher Nolan, who claims that inspiring the next generation of scientists was always a primary objective of making the film: "Right from the beginning we all really believed it's time to inspire another generation to really look outwards and to look to the stars again. We hoped that by dramatizing science and making it something that could be entertaining for kids we might inspire some of the astronauts of tomorrow - that would be the ultimate goal of the project."

This wouldn't be the first time Interstellar has inspired real-life science, as the VFX team recently published a scientific paper about constructing an accurate black hole. Since Nolan had renowned astrophysicist Kip Thorne on board, it does seem that the science behind the wormhole and black hole is nearly beyond reproach. Whether the same can be said for the science behind magical, love-powered fifth-dimensional bookcases, however, remains to be seen.
Science
Science of Sci-Fi
Physics
Black Holes

Load Comments