Invisibility is a staple of science fiction, from H.G. Wells to Romulans. Now scientists see a way to make objects disappear
By JR Minkel
Posted 09.27.2006 at 2:00 am 1 Comment
Scroll to the bottom of the page for a video simulation of an invisibility-equipped Aston Martin. And for a timeline detailing the history of innovations in the science of invisitbility, click 'View Photos' at left.
WHAT: A way to make objects invisible. The trick is to use metamaterial, a complex hybrid structure of metal and insulator that makes light move around an object like air flowing over an airplane wing.
Take a scenic flight over the summit of Mount Vesuvius in Italy, and the view below is chilling. A dense patchwork of urban sprawl from the nearby city of Naples laps at the flanks of one of the most violent volcanoes on Earth. Since A.D. 79, when Vesuvius exploded with little warning and entombed Pompeii and its 3,000 townsfolk under 15 feet of scalding ash, the volcano has erupted at least 30 times.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.