Welcome to the Science of Star Trek, a podcast series inspired by my review of Star Trek, the Original Series in the summer podcast special series Trekking Through Compliance.In this series I am joined by Astrophysicist and  Healthcare Futurist Ben Locwin. In this podcast we consider the TOS episode Tomorrow is Yesterday as a starting point for the consideration of the science around black holes, white holes, and wormholes.

In this episode, USS Enterprise is thrown back in time to Earth during the 1960s by the effects of a high-gravity “black star”. The Enterprise ends up in Earth’s upper atmosphere and is picked up as a UFO on military radar. Spock and Chief Engineer Scott inform Kirk of a possible escape method by slingshotting around the Sun to break away and return to their time. The maneuver is risky, since even a small miscalculation could destroy the ship, or make them miss their own era. Kirk okays the maneuver, and time on board the Enterprise moves backwards. The Enterprise is then successfully returned to the 23rd century.

Highlights include:

  1. Is a black star the same thing as a black hole?
  2. How does a white star become a black star?
  3. What is the Quality Exclusion Principle and how does it apply?
  4. What is the Chronology Protection and how does it work?