A new explanation has been concocted pertaining to time’s apparent asymmetric nature. Maybe, it’s not all that asymmetric. The researchers behind the theory explain that it might be feasible for time to flow backwards.
What is time? This has remained one of the big questions science has yet to answer in clear terms, as have its many aspects like its direction. Why does time appear to be going in one direction? Can it flow back? But then, once an egg is broken, it cannot be put back into order. This might be deemed unusual since entities in the universe mostly display perfect symmetry. Are our eyes deceiving us? What if the unidirectional characteristic was but an illusion, only perceived as such, while in reality it can move backwards?
Physicist Sean Carroll from CalTech and cosmologist Alan Guth from MIT explain this concept known as the “arrow of time” with a simulation they have developed to show that the asymmetry can be a natural product of a symmetric combination of equations.
According to the concept behind the arrow of time, the direction of time makes sense with the entropy increase in the universe that purports putting something in chaos (greater entropy) back into order (characterised by less entropy) requires more energy — which is why the egg remains broken and does not form back instantaneously. What if the egg does go back to how it was in another universe?
The simulation the scientists have created entails an interaction of particles under gravity, displaying movement in random directions. Some of these will gather naturally into a lump which will have less entropy to later separate and expand in a particular direction of time. The entropy was found to increase even when mirroring the whole system – this implies that both time directions appear to be feasible.
The research will be soon published. Once it is, scientists are likely to debate its relevance.
Somehow, though, in spite of this potential explanation, the question remains without a clear answer.