Documenting the Coming Singularity

Friday, November 07, 2008

Cloaking objects at a distance

the physics arXiv blog - November 5, 2008

One of the disadvantages of invisibility cloaks is that anything placed inside one is automatically blinded, since no light can get in.

Now Yun Lai and colleagues from The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology have come up with a way round this using the remarkable idea of cloaking at a distance. This involves using a “complementary material” to hide an object outside it.
Here’s the idea: complementary materials are designed to have a permittivity and permeability that are complementary to the values in a nearby region of space. “Complementary” means that the values cancel out the effect that that this region of space has on a plane lightwave passing through. To an observer, that region of space simply vanishes.

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