Tuesday, 12 Aug, 2008 Science

Scientists One Step Closer to Creating Invisibility Material


Scientists One Step Closer to Creating Invisibility MaterialScientists from the University of California, Berkeley, say they have come very close to developing cloak which could make people and objects invisible. They performed a demonstration of the invisible cloak, created from synthetically engineered materials, which are able to change the direction of light around three dimensional objects.

It is worth mentioning that previously scientists were able to create a material that can make invisible only two dimensional objects.

Xiang Zhang together with his colleagues at the university is going to release their discovery later this week. The results of the research will be published in the journals Nature and Science.

The finding could be widely used in a variety of fields, but mainly in the military applications, being able to put out of sight people and objects. A human eye can easily see objects due to the fact that they spread the light that shines on them, reflecting a part of it back to the eye.

The invisible cover features so-called mate-materials that can redirect radar, light or other waves that strike the object, resembling water that flows around a smooth rock in a river. Meta-materials represent fusion of metal and circuit board materials, including ceramic, Teflon or fiber combination. These materials are developed to curve visible light is a special way. Researchers have the goal of using the materials to arc light around objects so they don't produce reflections or shadows.

The technology is different from stealth, which instead of making the plane invisible, simply lowers the cross-section available to radar, thus making the plane difficult to track. It would be interesting to note that the funding of the research was provided partially by the US Army Research Office and the National Science Foundation's Nano-Scale Science and Engineering Center.

Source: The Sydney Morning Herald

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