Scientists have been searching for the origin of some of the most precious metals on Earth – including gold, silver, and platinum – for almost six decades. And now we might finally have the answer.
The idea of parallel universes, once consigned to science fiction, is now becoming respectable among scientists – at least, among physicists, who have a tendency to push ideas to the limits of what is conceivable.
“Wormholes” are cosmic tunnels that can connect two distant regions of the universe, and have been popularized by the dissemination of theoretical physics and by works of science fiction like Stargate, Star Trek or, more recently, Interstellar. Using present-day technology it would be impossible to create a gravitational wormhole, as the field would have to be manipulated with huge amounts of gravitational energy, which no one yet knows how to generate. In electromagnetism, however, advances in metamaterials and invisibility have allowed researchers to put forward several designs to achieve this.
Over the years there has been quite a bit of debate about whether house plants really can filter indoor air by removing toxins and particles. NASA tests in a spacecraft packed with plants showed markedly better air, but proving that plants are efficient filters in other situations hasn’t been so easy.