Lumpi makes historical trip to the 4th dimension
01.04.16 – A Chihuahua has traveled across EPFL’s miniature black hole and entered the fourth dimension. He’s the first living organism to have accomplished this feat.
Watch out for EPFL’s mini black hole! This experimental device swallows up everything it encounters: pens, paper clips, cell phones. No small object can escape it. But what kind of world does this dark hole open onto? It’s impossible to imagine the four-dimensional universe hidden within. Lumpi, a Chihuahua specially trained for the voyage, is now the first living creature to have traveled to the supra-temporal world that was predicted by Einstein in his famous Tronheim-Mersault lecture.
“Lumpi is the right size to fit into our black hole,” explains Jean-Pierre Soulages, Director of EPFL’s Dark Matter Laboratory. “Larger objects would get stuck between the three-dimensional and four-dimensional universes, and it would be quite unpleasant” The scientist, who accidentally put his arm in the hole back In December 2015, knows what he’s talking about. “Your forearm suddenly goes into four dimensions. You feel your fingers being pulled; the transition point between our world and the other is quite painful, particularly in the tendons.” Fortunately he recovered with the help of physiotherapy.
Will Lumpi come back safe and sound? The scientists tried to coax him back into our world by putting some treats in front of the artificial black hole, said Soulages, but “Unfortunately it was our cat Schrödi who responded to the lure. Next thing we knew, he had been sucked up in the black hole as well.”
According to cosmologists’ equations, Lumpi and Schrödi are both dead and alive simultaneously. “It’s a paradoxical characteristic of multi-dimensional worlds,” he explains. “And to make matters worse, Schrödi doesn’t get along with Lumpi. We’re worried he’ll give him a four-dimensional scratch.”
Will Lumpi suffer the same fate as Laïka, the dog abandoned in orbit in 1957 by the Soviets — the unfortunate hero of human ambition, consigned for eternity to the company of his feline enemy? The scientists claim they’re doing everything they can to bring the pair safely home. “But there’s no way I’m putting my hand in to catch them,” says Soulage. “That’s far too painful. In my opinion, it would be a good job for a PhD student, or maybe a master’s student working in the lab. Provided their arms are long enough.”
source : The Ecole polytechnique fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL)