On 'Conversations': Award-winning physicist says time travel possible

Since the age of 10 and the untimely death of his father, Ron Mallett has wanted to build a time machine. Mallett is an accomplished theoretical physicist and professor at the University of Connecticut. He argues that time travel is not only possible, but that it has already been achieved in terms of fractions of seconds. He believes that once we develop jets that are fast enough, time travel through years will be possible. In the next episode of “Conversations from Penn State,” Mallett will discuss how everything from learning math and science in grade school to earning his doctorate has been done with the intention of going back in time and seeing his father again.

“If I could build this time machine then I could go back into the past, I could save my father, tell him what was going to happen, see him again and change everything,” Mallett said.

As a teenager this goal provided Mallett with a means of grieving for his father, however it has morphed into a new goal. He hopes that one day time travel technology will be able to help predict catastrophes such as earthquakes and tsunamis.

"Conversations from Penn State" is a series hosted by veteran interviewer Patty Satalia. The program offers thoughtful, in-depth exchanges with a broad range of remarkable people. In many cases, their trailblazing work has advanced their field and drawn national and worldwide attention.

The show will air at 12:30 p.m. Monday, Feb. 7, on the Big Ten Network. It also will air at 9 p.m. Thursday, Feb. 17 and at 6 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 20 on WPSU-TV.

Ron Mallett is a professor of physics at the University of Connecticut. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees and a doctorate at Penn State. As a member of the American Physical Society and the National Society of Black Physicists, Mallett specializes in theoretical general relativity and relativistic quantum mechanics. Mallett is noted for his research in black holes, relativistic astrophysics and time travel. He was honored with the Alumni Fellow Award at Penn State University in 2007, as well as the Outstanding Alumni Award in 2006. He has been a professor in the physics department at the University of Connecticut since 1975.

The show also can be viewed at http://conversations.psu.edu online.

For more than 20 years, Patty Satalia has engaged dynamic individuals from all walks of life and areas of expertise. No matter the guest, Satalia approaches each conversation with the same dedication to research and with a passion for helping people share their stories and insights with the world.


Media Contacts: 

Christine O'Brien

Last Updated May 20, 2011