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Scientists celebrate developments in invisibility cloaks

Scientists say the prospect of an invisibility cloaking device is moving “from science fiction to reality”.

Let's hope that the invisibility cloak of the future might be a little more effective than this one
Let's hope that the invisibility cloak of the future might be a little more effective than this one

WHAT WOULD YOU do if you were invisible for a day? That dream could be within your grasp as scientists make advances in the development of invisibility cloaks.

Well, maybe you won’t be able to don an actual cloak to sneak into the cinema for free or creep around a dressing room undetected anytime soon, but the new technology is expected to have a big impact on how things like microscopes and lenses work.

Science Daily reports that new developments in an area called ‘transformation optics’ are enabling scientists to manipulate light in ways which had been considered impossible in the past. Joachim Fischer of the Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany says advances in the bending of light mean that it could be possible in the future to make an invisiblity cloak  which would “cover the entire visible spectrum”.

Meanwhile scientists in Denmark and the UK are also celebrating invisibility advancements (here’s the science bit), which they say brings the idea of a cloak “from science fiction to reality”. Scientists have worked out how to reduce the size of the invisibility cloak relative to the oject they’re trying to hide.

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About the author:

Emer McLysaght

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