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Meta-Skin Could Just Be The Next Invisibility Cloak

Introducing a skin that could reflect radar waves, could this be the key to producing invisibility cloaks?


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Engineers from Iowa State University had a vision of proving electromagnetic waves and visible are possible to be deflected (or reflected) by a tunable and flexible liquid-metal material. So when assoc. professor Liang Dong, professor Jiming Song and a group of graduate students were funded by The National Science Foundation and China Scholarship Council to pursue the study, reaching their vision couldn’t be clearer. Yup, this is the real deal invisibility cloak technology.


Invisibility cloak technology (Source: Liang Dong)

The team created a “meta-skin” made up from ‘rows of split ring resonators filled with galistan, embedded inside layers of silicone sheets’. The small rings act as electric inductors while the spaces between each ring serve as electric conductors. And with this composition, a resonator is produced which is able to collect and suppress radar waves at a specific frequency. When the meta-skin is pulled, the metal rings inside are stretched as well and the suppression of waves is done at a different frequency.


Invisibility cloak technology (Source: Kurzweil)

According to the authors, the present meta-skin technology will find many applications in electromagnetic frequency tuning, shielding and scattering suppression. They also hope to convert the meta-skin in a nanoscale so it could be applied in higher-frequency electromagnetic waves such as visible or infrared light. And when this happens, the cloak if invisibility is going to be a reality.

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Loudette Fabian
Contributor, Asia and the Pacific. Loudette is a metallurgical engineering student at the University of the Philippines.

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