Mr Swiatecki Science 90
June 14th 2016
What is Time?
What is time? For most people, the answer to this may be a clock or the thing that organizes our lives. Contrary to this, scientists have found that time is a lot more than a tool with numbers, but is actually just an illusion. Time can be understood as the movements that happen in an irreversible progression from the past, present and the future. This simply means that there is no individual past, present or future, but they all exist together.
Einstein was the first physicist to believe that our conception of time was an illusion. Opposing this belief, Isaac Newton had previously believed that time just simply went by and did not vary between individuals. Through his studies, Einstein concluded that although a very convincing illusion, most of the things we had formerly believed about time were false. This theory stated that there was no separation of the past, present or future, but that they all existed at the same time together and that time went by differently for individuals, depending on placement and situation. Albert Einstein believed that if we positioned one clock closer to a planet, we would also increase the gravitational pull meaning time would actually run slower for a clock positioned higher as compared to the same clock positioned lower or closer to sea level. An experiment to test this theory was performed in the 1970s with one atomic clock in an airplane and one placed on the ground. The results showed that time went by slower by a fraction of a second for the clock in the airplane which was in motion compared to the clock on the ground. These results further proved that Einstein’s theory of the passing of time and how it could be affected was correct.