Making opaque materials totally transparent

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Most naturally occurring materials have a disordered atomic structure that interferes with the propagation of both sound and electromagnetic waves. When the waves come into contact with these materials, they bounce around and disperse – and their energy dissipates according to a highly complex interference pattern, diminishing in intensity. That means it’s virtually impossible to transmit data or energy intact across wave-scattering media and fully leverage the potential of wave technology.

For an example, you need look no further than your smartphone – the geolocation function works less well inside buildings where radiofrequency waves scatter in all directions. Other potential applications include biomedical imaging and geological surveying, where it’s important to be able to send waves across highly disordered media.

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Making a better invisibility cloak with lasers

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Nearly all technological advances in the past century or more have depended on our ability to produce and manipulate the vast variety of materials that nature has given us. Nowhere is this more evident than in the field of electronics. From a smorgasbord of semiconductors, polymers, and metals, we’ve been able to create a dazzling array of circuitry that now underpins pretty much every aspect of modern life.

 

 

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New Invisibility Cloak Technology Made In Water

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Come 2010 and we have another invisibility cloak technology knocking on our doors to be embraced. Continuing the illusionary invisible cloaking technique from Harry Potter books, Ji-Ping Huang and colleagues from Fudan University in Shanghai, China, theorize a technique of suspending silver-plated nanoparticles in water to create soft and flexible metamaterial, that forms an ingredient of an invisibility device.

 

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