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Invisibility cloak upgraded to bend infrared light, not to mention our minds

Sean Hollister
July 27, 2010
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The fabled cloak of invisibility was once considered impossible for modern science, chilling out with perpetual motion up in the clouds, but these days scientists are tilting at blurry windmills with a modicum of success several times a year. The latest advance in theory comes to us from Michigan Tech, which says it can now cloak objects in the infrared spectrum. Previous attempts using metallic metamaterials could only bend microwave radiation, the study claims, but using tiny resonators made of chalcogenide glass arranged in spokes around the object (see diagram at left) researcher Elena Semouchkina and colleagues successfully hid a simulated metal cylinder from 3.5 terahertz waves. While it's hard to say when we might see similar solutions for visible light, even a practical application of infrared cloaking could put your night vision goggles to shame, or perhaps block covert objects from being detected by those newfangled terahertz x-rays.

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