When it comes to the realm of science fiction, practically anything is possible, anything born from the fantasies of talented writers and thinkers. But there are some stories from the world of science that are even more incredible than anything even the richest imagination can come up with. Here are some examples.
1. The star that disappeared
A pulsar is a dense, massive star, that emits electromagnetic radiation that scientists can detect. Researchers in Holland had been studying J1906 - a relatively young pulsar comprising half of a binary star system, for a period of about 5 years. They were searching for clues as to the composition of the star satellite, when J1906 simply disappeared.
It lies hidden behind the curvature of spacetime, the result of its orbit around its star satellite. The mass of the orbiting star helps create a sort of hole in the fabric of space and time, moving the axis of J1906 over and causing electromagnetic emissions and impulses at its base. For now, this means the inability to further study the characteristics of the star. Researchers theorize that it will be visible once again in 160 years.
2. Three parents, one child
Mexican doctors, with the aid of scientists and researchers from the US, have found an innovative technique for overcoming genetic diseases passed on from mother to baby. The technique is called "mitochondrial donation".
It involves taking the nucleus out of the donor's egg cell but leaving the mitochondria intact. Then, the nucleus is replaced with that of the potential mother's, whose mitochondrial DNA carries the genetic defect. The first baby born as a result of this procedure was spared a hereditary disease of the nervous system.
3. 10 percent
A 44-year-old man went to the doctor, complaining of weakness in his left leg. After undergoing a CT scan, the results were unbelievable. As it turned out, the man had been diagnosed with excess cerebrospinal fluid when he was child, was treated, and at the age of 14, the fluid was removed. Apparently, however, it continued to slowly fill his cranial cavity throughout the next 30 years, eroding his brain.
Even though he had just 10% of his brain left, he was a normally functioning, healthy adult. Doctors had no explanation for how a person could function with so many regions of their brain missing. There's the hypothesis that the man's brain is in a state of constant learning. This means that the areas of the brain that have specific functions may in fact be much more flexible than was previously thought.
4. The telepathy machine
In 2014, American scientists announced stunning proof for the concept of telepathy: by using noninvasive brain stimulation, specially designed robots and the internet, a test subject was able to send a simple mental message (hello) to another test subject, without there being any physical link between them. One was located in India, the other in France.
The first subject, connected to an electroencephalogram with internet access, thought of a word, which was then translated to binary code by the computer and sent electronically to a robot which gave the message to the receiver. He received it in the form of light flashes corresponding to the sent message.
Even though this is not pure telepathy, it is still a significant breakthrough resulting from 10 years of research and opens many doors to further studies. The results were reproduced in 2015 by a team from the University of Washington.