Dr. Ronald Mallett is building a time machine. He is a theoretical physicist who received his doctorate from Penn State and who is now based at the University of Connecticut. Dr. Mallett first conceived the idea to build a time machine at the age of 10.
His father was a television repairman who lived with his family in the Bronx. He was a World War II veteran, a battlefield medic, who used the GI Bill to study electronic technology. Dr. Mallet, the oldest of four children, was taken under his father’s wing and given scientific toys and taught how to fix TVs. His dad, though extremely busy, spent every spare moment with his family, taking them on trips and excursions and being an excellent father and husband.
But then tragedy struck. When Ronald was 10, at the age of 33 his father died of a massive heart attack. He was devastated and withdrew within himself. A year later he came across H.G. Welles’ novel, The Time Machine, and an idea began to form in his mind. He felt that if he could somehow go back in time he could tell his father of his heart condition and save his life.
This became his overriding, overpowering goal in life. However, he kept it a secret lest those around him, already concerned about his withdrawn behavior, would think that he was crazy. A year later he came across another key book, The Universe and Dr. Einstein. Though he had a hard time understanding much of it, he read it through from cover to cover. Einstein said time is not something that is fixed. It flows like a river, and as such, it can be altered. He realized that he would have to follow in Einstein’s footsteps, and become a theoretical physicist, if he hoped to make his dream come true.
After the death of his father, the family was plunged into poverty. Therefore, he followed his father’s path in securing an education. He joined the Air Force during the Viet Nam War and spent every spare moment reading about physics. After he was discharged, he used the GI Bill to complete his studies.
All these many years, it was becoming a terrific strain keeping his lifelong quest a secret. He confided only in his wife and one or two others. In academia he developed as his specialty the study of Black Holes and used this as a cover. Black Holes are collapsing stars which intensify the pull of gravity and cause time to slow down.
Dr. Mallett finally “came out of the closet” with his colleagues in 2002, and told them of his idea to build a time machine. He presented them with a completely developed system of equations based on Einstein’s theories. Nonetheless, he feared they might not take him seriously. To his great surprise, and relief, they did not. In fact, his work was lauded and applauded. He has since assembled a team of top notch physicists from Penn State and the University of Connecticut and is leading them, full time, in a structured, funded quest to actually build a time machine!
Dr. Mallett has often been asked about the Grandfather Paradox, that is, the notion that if you were to go back in time you could do something, like prevent your grandfather from meeting your grandmother, and so then you would not have been born. His answer? Dr. Mallett says that if you were to go back in time, and thereby change the past, you would not emerge in this universe but in a parallel one! Sounds like science fiction, however, Quantum Physics has postulated the possibility of there actually being many, many, if not an infinity of, universes each slightly different from the next!
Director Spike Lee is working on a film about the life and work of Dr. Ron Mallett. The script is written, and he is casting the roles. It is only a matter of time before it appears on the big screen.