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Wormhole

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Multiple realities
(covers information from several alternate timelines)
Barzan Wormhole

Alpha Quadrant aperture of the Barzan wormhole (2366)

Barzan Wormhole in the Delta Quadrant

Delta Quadrant aperture of the Barzan wormhole (2373)

A wormhole is a "tunnel" connecting two separate points in space-time. It consists of two apertures in space-time connected by a conduit outside normal space, through subspace. Since this conduit is shorter than the distance between the two points in normal space, it allows rapid travel between the two points.

If a wormhole was large and stable enough, a starship (or other traveler) could travel through it. A wormhole could also connect two different points in time as well. As wormholes collapse, they become smaller and are known as micro-wormholes. (VOY: "Eye of the Needle")

Before knowing where the Harry Kim wormhole ended, Tuvok stated that there was a 75% chance that it didn't lead to the Alpha Quadrant.(VOY: "Eye of the Needle")

This would suggest that natural wormholes in the galaxy, never leave the galaxy.

In 2259, in the alternate reality, the United Federation of Planets was conducting wormhole research within Federation space a sector away from the Klingon Neutral Zone. The site of the research was marked on a star chart displayed at Starfleet Headquarters on Earth in the offices of Admiral Christopher Pike and Admiral Alexander Marcus. (Star Trek Into Darkness, display graphic [1])

Natural wormholes

Wormholes and the possibility of using them for time travel had been recognized by Human scientists since the 20th century. In 2368, Captain Jean-Luc Picard of the USS Enterprise-D agreed with faux historian Berlinghoff Rasmussen that using knowledge gained by means of time travel through a wormhole (for example, in order to save an endangered planet) could allow the "next Adolf Hitler" or Khan Noonien Singh to come into being. According to the captain, first year philosophy students had been asked the question ever since the first wormholes had been discovered. (TNG: "A Matter of Time")

No known naturally-occurring stable wormholes had yet been discovered in the Alpha or Beta Quadrants. The only likely candidate, the Barzan wormhole, was found to be unstable at its far terminus. However, several relatively stable wormhole-like phenomena have been reported in the Delta Quadrant. (TNG: "The Price"; VOY: "Eye of the Needle", "Night", "Counterpoint")

Artificial wormholes

Bajoran wormhole

The Bajoran wormhole

Artificial wormhole

An artificial wormhole opened in 2372

USS Enterprise caught in artificial wormhole

Wormhole distortion

The only currently known stable artificial wormhole was the Bajoran wormhole, created by beings known to the Bajorans as the Prophets, who dwelled within. This wormhole was stable enough for long-term, two-way space travel between the Bajor system in the Alpha Quadrant and the Idran system in the Gamma Quadrant. (DS9: "Emissary")

In the 2370s, the Federation investigated methods of creating artificial wormholes. The project was headed by Dr. Lenara Kahn of the Trill Science Ministry, who eventually developed a workable theory that she tested aboard the USS Defiant in 2372. The technique involved generating a subspace tensor matrix in the 25,000-30,000 cochrane range, and then sending out a magneton pulse using a target drone. The pulse would then interact with the matrix to produce a subspace distortion, which would become an opening in the space-time continuum.

The first test of this technique produced a wormhole that was stable for 23.4 seconds. On the second test, a class-4 probe was launched through the wormhole to simulate the passage of an interstellar spacecraft. However, the probe's shields unexpectedly interacted with the tetryon field, collapsing the wormhole and producing a massive graviton shock wave that heavily damaged the Defiant. (DS9: "Rejoined")

The MIDAS array was able to create an artificial micro-wormhole that connected the Alpha Quadrant to the Delta Quadrant, but it was only stable for a brief moment. (VOY: "Pathfinder")

Warp engine imbalances have also been known to create wormholes, as happened to the USS Enterprise in the 2270s. While attempting to intercept an unknown alien en route to Earth, Captain Kirk ordered warp drive utilized before proper simulations had been completed, causing the Enterprise to become trapped in a wormhole for a brief period of time. (Star Trek: The Motion Picture)

The apparent dissimilarity between the wormhole featured in Star Trek: The Motion Picture and other wormholes featured in subsequent episodes was somewhat explained in VOY: "Counterpoint" as Torat claims that the term "wormhole" is a layman's term that covers any number of phenomena.

List of wormholes

See also

External link

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