Print 34 comment(s) - last by ApfDaMan.. on May 5 at 11:28 AM

A tiny invisibility cloak has been developed, combining silicon and a carpet-like design.

A tiny, unique cloak has been developed, demonstrating how silicon and a carpet-like design can take scientists even further in their explorations of invisibility.


The journal Nature Materials reported on the development, which was constructed based on a carpet-like design theory first described by Professor John Pendry, from Imperial College London, in 2008. Teams involved in its current production included Michal Lipson and her team at Cornell University and Xiang Zhang, along with his team at University of California, Berkeley. 


Hosting a design that allows it to eliminate distortion from the shape of anything underneath it, the cloak enables light to bend around it, which creates the illusion of a flattened surface. 


A silicon sheet measuring a few thousandths of a millimeter across and containing multiple miniature holes makes up the cloak, which “changes the local density” of the item placed beneath it, according to Professor Zhang. 


 “When light passes from air into water it will be bent, because the optical density, or refraction index, of the water is different to air,” Professor Zhang explained. “So by manipulating the optical density of an object, you can transform the light path from a straight line to any path you want.”


The key to changing the optical density in this case lies in the cloak’s holes, which optical light cannot see because they are smaller than the size of its wavelength. All optical light does see is a “sort of air-silicon mixture,” as Professor Zhang explained, which means that at least in terms of light’s view, the item’s density has been altered. 


The recently constructed silicon sheet does not stand as the first attempt at invisibility through a cloak. For example, in early August of 2008, Researchers at the Nanoscale Science and Engineering Center at the University of California, Berkeley used nano-fishnet of metal layers and nanoscale silver wires to cloak 3D materials. The two separate teams involved in this project, which also relied on the bending of light, were led by Professor Zhang, as well.


Similar attempts at invisibility cloaks of the past have also included constructions made of metal, which highlights this current project’s significant step toward progression. Unlike metal, which allows for losses of light, silicon absorbs only a minimal amount. The new material enables scientists to move forward from some of the flaws that metal’s light loss can cause upon trying to achieve invisibility.

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Oh wow.
By SoylentG on 5/4/2009 8:58:44 AM , Rating: 5
"I put on my robe and wizard hat"

RE: Oh wow.
By StevoLincolnite on 5/4/2009 9:08:28 AM , Rating: 2
Oooh! Oooh! I know this... Your a hamster! Correct guess?

RE: Oh wow.
By Spivonious on 5/4/2009 9:11:32 AM , Rating: 4
A miniature giant space hamster, perhaps.

RE: Oh wow.
By Boze on 5/4/2009 11:05:31 AM , Rating: 5
Go for the eyes Boo, go for the eyeeeeess! YYYYAAAARRRR!!!!

RE: Oh wow.
By AEvangel on 5/4/2009 6:40:36 PM , Rating: 2
I love that the quotes were hilarious.

RE: Oh wow.
By Fenixgoon on 5/4/2009 9:52:35 PM , Rating: 2
Boo will claw out his eyes once and for all. Evil meet sword! SWORD...... MEET EVIIIIIIIIIIIIIIL!!!

RE: Oh wow.
By PlasmaBomb on 5/4/2009 11:31:04 AM , Rating: 3
+1 for Bloodninja quote :)

RE: Oh wow.
By just4U on 5/4/2009 10:43:15 PM , Rating: 2
(GRIN) you may like this in reference to all this.. Harry Potter "hey there Deliah" Parody by JamesAtWar.. Especially this part..

"Took my wand and grabbed a broom and snuck into the ladies room. The invisibility cloak didn't work that day. One lady struck me with her purse and said I was under the imperious curse, They did not believe me and the police came.. "

HEH .. Check it out if you like, The guys very good!!


RE: Oh wow.
By zshift on 5/5/2009 2:19:30 AM , Rating: 2

By Schrag4 on 5/4/2009 9:31:03 AM , Rating: 2
So tiny....that you can't see it.

RE: Tiny
By RamarC on 5/4/2009 9:57:43 AM , Rating: 4
let me know when it's big enough to cover an aston martin vanquish.

RE: Tiny
By Jellodyne on 5/4/2009 6:08:15 PM , Rating: 4
Let me know when its big enough to cover the plot holes in the Bond with the invisible Aston Martin.

RE: Tiny
By RamarC on 5/4/2009 7:45:54 PM , Rating: 5
if it get's halle berry in my front seat, i don't give a damn about plot holes. ;)

Oh Great
By DASQ on 5/4/2009 10:50:08 AM , Rating: 5
Now I have to deal with a Dark Templar rush.

RE: Oh Great
By 85 on 5/4/2009 11:41:56 AM , Rating: 2
Have you any conception of what you've created here? Do you have any idea what this... this Hybrid is capable of?

Uh Oh...
By BarneyBadass on 5/4/2009 2:17:07 PM , Rating: 3
This will be a perverts delight!

Why will they need "UP-Skirting" any more?

They can just hang out in dressing rooms; bathrooms and the such.

Of course... there could be a downside!


RE: Uh Oh...
By FITCamaro on 5/4/2009 3:22:55 PM , Rating: 4
Fat chicks.

Damn, where'd we set the invisibility cloak?
By SnakeBlitzken on 5/4/2009 9:43:17 AM , Rating: 3
"Anyone seen it?"

By 9nails on 5/5/2009 1:26:42 AM , Rating: 2
LOL! What would really suck is if I set my invisibility cloak on my car keys.

you know
By meepstone on 5/4/2009 5:55:56 PM , Rating: 2
I can see making stuff invisible really useful for pranks!

RE: you know
By TheEinstein on 5/4/2009 8:24:42 PM , Rating: 1
Ok required smart person ruining the endless spree of jokes post.

Sorry... I just itch... and unless I post this... the itch will get worse... it's a pet peeve topic of mine.

Bending light? No it is not bending light, it is stopping it. If I coat myself with a layer of silver atoms I might possibly look silver! ZOMG!

As for invisibility cloaks... and invisibility in general. NOT FRIGGIN POSSIBLE!!! Consider the size of the item and the distance to the item. As one scales the other can scale for normal vision ranges.

You may be able to reduce the visibility range, you may be able to make a perfect match of colors with the location your at, but to say invisibility is childish. Essentially take a micron from the view to the target. Now multiply the number of microns by 1 trillion ^ 1 trillion. Thats roughly a decent number to try to hide a human being at all distances a normal person can see from with a moderate pair of binoculars.

How many Microns must be 'warped' or 'invisibiled'? 1 in 2 will not do it. 9 in 10 will not do it. Though the range of visibility shrinks, it is not cloaking. 99 in 100 will make it hard to distinguish, but you can still make out the difference.

Please do not post about invisibility but instead call it claimed invisibility... This was a major math paper I once did to another forum... After the first so called 'invisibility' effect was discussed as if it was a real thing.

RE: you know
By Belard on 5/5/2009 3:02:23 AM , Rating: 2
Watch Ghost in the Shell... that could be the future...

Assassins good for them, not for victims.

I suppose...
By MrBlastman on 5/4/2009 10:07:45 AM , Rating: 2
All you have to do is throw a cloud of dirt on it to defeat it.

RE: I suppose...
By Titanius on 5/4/2009 11:46:42 AM , Rating: 2
But how do you know where to throw the dirt if its invisible in the first place?

Dun dun dun...

By foolsgambit11 on 5/4/2009 7:48:37 PM , Rating: 3
It's going to have to be at least 3 times bigger!

By icanhascpu on 5/4/2009 9:34:33 AM , Rating: 2
So tiny you cant see it = invisibility cloak!

We just leaned that...
By Clauzii on 5/4/2009 9:35:41 AM , Rating: 2
"It's very important to choose the right type of silicone when getting breast implants."

By DeepBlue1975 on 5/4/2009 10:01:15 AM , Rating: 2
This tech is so great that I can't even see its benefit.

(it's a joke)

By SpaceJumper on 5/4/2009 1:35:08 PM , Rating: 2
Well, one day if I don't to talk to anybody then I can make myself invisible and people will leave me alone. I can go anywhere I want to go and see whatever I want to see without other people knowing that I am there.

By werepossum on 5/4/2009 2:22:53 PM , Rating: 2
So they've invented a device which takes things too small to see and makes them invisible?

Ain't science grand?

I think they mean
By jlips6 on 5/4/2009 4:39:02 PM , Rating: 2
Focal density. Not local density.
Of course, I'm just saying what seems to be right to me. It could all be a horrible mistake.

Think Geek
By 9nails on 5/5/2009 1:30:04 AM , Rating: 2
Just tell me when I can buy the T-Shirt at Think Geek! It would make for an awesome Halloween the first year that these come out. Imagine the mind freak that the neighbors get from all the skeleton costumes.

By Tegrat on 5/5/2009 9:07:33 AM , Rating: 2
"Well, I put the cloak down for a second to answer the phone and I'll be damned if I can remember where I put it...."

By ApfDaMan on 5/5/2009 11:28:18 AM , Rating: 2

"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007
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