CLOAK OF INVISIBILITY
Thursday February 3rd, 2011
SCIENTISTS DEVELOP ‘CLOAK OF INVISIBILITY’
It’s been a standard of sc-fi fantasy and mythology since story telling first began, but at last scientists are predicting that the legendary ‘cloak of invisibility’ will become a reality. Physicists from the University of Birmingham, Imperial College, London, and Technical University of Denmark have developed the ‘cloak’ using calcite crystal which can hide objects by splitting light. So far it has worked only with small objects such as paper clips and pins.
By gluing two triangular sections of the crystal together on a mirror the light enters the calcite before being split into two rays of opposing polarisation. These travel at different speeds in different directions which, in turn, makes the object under the ‘cloak’ invisible.
Development team leader Dr Zhang said, 'This is a huge step forward as, for the first time, the cloaking area is rendered at a size that is big enough for the observer to 'see' the invisible object with the naked eye... We believe that by using calcite, we can start to develop a cloak of significant size that will open avenues for future applications of cloaking devices.'
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