Researchers create ultra-thin and flexible Harry Potter-like invisibility cloak

Autore: ExtremeTech

Harry Potter invisibility cloak

Researchers at the University of Texas in Austin have created a new, ultra-thin (0.15mm) Harry Potter-like invisibility cloak.

Until now, most invisibility cloaks have been large, cumbersome, desk-mounted constructions that really stretch the definition of the word cloak; for the most part, they’re more like proof of concepts for the invisibility material being tested, rather than actual invisibility cloaks. The University of Texas invisibility cloak, however, at just 166 micrometers thick, really is a cloak in the Harry Potter sense of the word.

Almost every invisibility cloak that we’ve written about, including the infamous Canadian camouflage/invisibility cloak, involves the use of metamaterials. Metamaterials are materials with properties that can’t be found in nature — usually, in the case of cloaking, materials that have a negative refractive index. A negative refractive index causes light to behave very oddly, allowing for the creation of superlenses that bend light beyond the diffraction limit, or cloaks that bend light in such a way as to make the covered object invisible. In this case, though, the researchers have eschewed metamaterials and instead fashioned an invisibility cloak out of conventional materials.

University of Texas, hiding a cylinder from microwaves with an invisibility cloakThe researchers created their invisibility cloak, dubbed a “metascreen,” out of a 66µm-thick sheet of copper that’s attached to a 100µm-thick sheet of flexible polycarbonate. This cloak is then attached to the object — in this case an 18cm (7in) cylinder — so that the cloak perfectly conforms to the object’s shape. The copper is patterned so that the scattered light from the cloak and the cloaked object cancel each other out. The end result is a cloak that hides the object from microwaves emitted from any direction, which might not sound all that impressive until you realize that most radar installations use microwaves.

In theory, the Texan metascreen could also be used to cloak visible light — after all, visible light, microwaves, and infrared are all physically identical; they’re just waves that oscillate at different frequencies. “In fact, metascreens are easier to realize at visible frequencies than bulk metamaterials and this concept could put us closer to a practical realization,” says Andrea Alu, co-author of the research paper. The one problem is that their patterned material scattering technique inversely scales with wavelength — so, while it’s possible to hide an 18cm cylinder from 3.6GHz microwave radiation, they can only hide micrometer-scale objects from 400-800THz visible light. One micrometer is 0.001 millimeters; the width of a red blood cell is about six micrometers.

Still, it’s yet another exciting invisibility cloak proof of concept. With the amount of money being poured into invisibility R&D, and the myriad of military (and consumer) uses, it’s really only a matter of time until an actual invisibility cloak is realized.

Now read: Physicists create world’s first multiverse of universes in the lab

Research paper: doi:10.1088/1367-2630/15/3/033037 – “Demonstration of an ultralow profile cloak for scattering suppression of a finite-length rod in free space”

4 thoughts on “Researchers create ultra-thin and flexible Harry Potter-like invisibility cloak

  1. ciao a tutti sn una giocatrice di metin 2 e vorrei un posto dove scaricare facilmente le hack per metin2…
    vorrei anke la spiegazione di ogni hack(come si usano e attivano e a ke servono)
    grazie 1000 in anticipo 10 pt e 5 stelle
    intendevo tipo x nn farsi rompere gli ogg dal fabbro o x l’exp e gli yang

  2. qualcuno mi potrebbe aiutare e darmi un riassunto in inglese di Harry Potter e la pietra filosofale?
    iO l’ ho fatto ma mi viene lunghissimo invece deve essere breve 14-15 righe ma nn so come accorciare la storia xD !!!

    aiutatemi x favOre grazie in anticipo =D

  3. THE PLOT
    The Importance of Being Earnest is Wilde’s most famous play and is about two young aristocratic men: Earnest Worthing, and Algernon Moncrieff. It turns out that Ernest is actually called Jack, that he was adopted at an early age by a Mr Thomas Cardew who, in his will, made him guardian to his grand-daughter, Miss Cecily Cardew, who lives in the country under the charge of her governess, Miss prism. In order to facilitate his social mobility Jack has invented an alter ego, a younger brother called Ernest who lives in the City. Even Algernon pretends to have a friend, called Bunbury, whose invalidity requires frequent attention, so ensuring his departure to the country. The story develops around the two young men’s attempts to marry Gwendolen Fairfax and Cecily respectively. Jack has to overcome the obstacle of Gwendolen’s mother, Lady Bracknell who interviews him as a prospective son-in-law but on finding that he was a foundling-found in a hand-bag-dismisses him. She could not dream of allowing her only daughter ’to marry into a cloak-room and form an alliance with a parcel’. The second and third act take place in the country where Cecily studies supervised by Miss Prism.

  4. bene ragazzi mi servirebbero le colonne sonore COMPLETE di questi film ki le ha ????
    1) harry potter
    2) pirati dei caraibi
    3)avp2 ( alien vs predator 2 )
    e la canzone(SEMPRE COMPLETA) della pubblicità D & G dei/delle due ragazzi/e che si baciano

    + ke altro mi servirebbero come file se possibile quindi cerco qualcuno che me le possa mandare (preferibilmente tramite msn) in quanto emule non mi funziona…cmq se mi indicate titoli e dove guardarle accetto lo stesso grazie….

    10 punti a ki ne posta di più o con maggiori informazioni
    x iris non mi interessa la tua opinione se non puoi aiutarmi puoi anche evitare di rispondere il che sarebbe la cosa migliore

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