Jim Wheeler

Document Type


Publication Date


First Page


Last Page



One of the most consistently fascinating results of Albert Einstein’s theory of general relativity is the prediction of wormholes – astronomical objects which are, among other things, capable of serving as a connection between two distant regions of space. The simplest class of wormholes are Schwarzschild wormholes – wormholes that behave as non-rotating, non-charged black holes, except that the event horizon serves as a connection to another wormhole elsewhere, instead of a point of no return.

This research presentation analyzes the attributes that make a Schwarzschild wormhole unsuitable for human travel, and examines the conditions that would have to hold for human travel through a wormhole to be possible. Following the work of Morris and Thorne, we examine the constraints that these conditions place on the metric and on the stress-energy tensor. It is shown that these constraints require a configuration of matter that violates accepted energy conditions, and is therefore likely to be non-physical. Avenues for further research with the potential to minimize these violations are outlined.

Included in

Physics Commons