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Wormholes are a controversial topic in physics, to say the least. Not only is the idea of traveling through these theoretical passageways between two disparate regions of spacetime debatable, but their very existence is unclear. A forthcoming paper, however, suggests a method to look for a wormhole inside a black hole—and those observations could occur within a decade.

On the preprint server arXiv.org, astrophysicists De-Chang Dai of Yangzhou University in China and Dejan Stojkovic of the University at Buffalo detail a test to determine whether Sagittarius A*, the supermassive black hole at the center of our galaxy, harbors a wormhole. Black holes are thought to be potential homes for wormholes, because of the extreme conditions both types of objects have in common. If such a wormhole does exist, they say, any stars lurking at its other side would conceivably exert a subtle but detectable gravitational influence on those at our end. The researchers’ paper has been accepted for publication in the journal Physical Review D.

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Category: Science