Cloaks of Invisiblity are now a reality

by Mark R

Okay, before you get too excited about getting some magic invisibility cloak like Harry Potter, you should know that so far, this technology has only made one thing invisible: a bump on a gold bar.

Yes, it is a bump that is only 0.00004 inches high and 0.0005 inch across, which you probably wouldn’t see in the first place, as it can only be seen with a magnifying glass.

Still, it is a start, and these researchers at Germany’s Karlsruhe Institute of Technology was able to cloak this tiny bump, could prevent its detection at nearly visible infrared frequencies. I’m not talking about camouflage, but the cloaking effect was visible in 3D from all angles.

How do they do it? Well, the cloak is a “a structure of crystals with air spaces in between, sort of like a woodpile, that bends light, hiding the bump in the gold later beneath”. As you might have guessed, size does matter when it comes to turning something invisible, and “cloaking larger items with that technology is not really feasible”.

In other words, we are a long way away before our vehicles can cloak like the Romulans on Star Trek. Still, I am experiencing both the wonder and horror of knowing that we have invisibility technology, even if it is still in its infancy.


5 reviews or comments

Gadget Thumbnails for 19-Mar-2010 » Coolest Gadgets Says: March 19, 2010 at 10:02 pm

[…] Cloaks of Invisiblity are now a reality […]

scott b Says: March 20, 2010 at 5:26 am

nothing new, I have cloaked my response below as you can (not) see.

BAE Systems creates e-ink camo for tank armor » Coolest Gadgets Says: January 14, 2011 at 6:16 pm

[…] have heard of stealth technology under development for years that uses some sort of cloak of invisibility reminiscent of Harry […]

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