Invisibility Cloak that "Hides History"

Theoretical Physicists have conceived of an invisibility cloak that not only makes an object invisible, it erases any trace of its history during the time it is invisible.

“Light normally slows down as it enters a material, but it is theoretically possible to manipulate the light rays so that some parts speed up and others slow down,” said McCall.

When light is ‘opened up’ in this way, rather than being curved in space, the leading half of the light speeds up and arrives before an event, whilst the trailing half is made to lag behind and arrives too late. The result is that for a brief period the event is not illuminated, and escapes detection. Once the concealed passage has been used, the cloak can then be ‘closed’ seamlessly.

Such a space-time cloak would open up a temporary corridor through which energy, information and matter could be manipulated or transported undetected. “If you had someone moving along the corridor, it would appear to a distant observer as if they had relocated instantaneously, creating the illusion of a Star-Trek transporter, McCall said. “So, theoretically, this person might be able to do something and you wouldn’t notice!”

Of course, this is all a theory for now. But such an invention would allow for some amazing applications. Untraceable communications, for one.

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8 Comments

  1. Get back to me when theoretical physicists start making theories that predict and explain reality rather than make headlines about “invisibility cloaks”. Since about 1970 there’s been too much cool theorizing and not enough verification with experiment.

    • Sure. I agree there is a lot of that. In the case of this kind of thing, there is a somewhat working invisibility cloak already, so it’s not as far fetched as it would have sounded a few years ago.

      But yes, there is a business in getting press for theories that are often complete BS, because ever since the government started funding pet science projects, we have an industry of BS artists posing as scientists (see Global Warming)

      • If this kind of thing interests you, check out Lee Smolin’s book “The Trouble with Physics”. Even though he doesn’t directly address AGW, the book is about a group of tribal physicists – powered and motivated by the politics of government funding taking over a subject and making it their own, and then attacking anyone not working the party line. The parallels, as Holmes would say, are exact.

        • “Intellectuals”, academics and other deluded people have a tendency to act this way. So called elites gravitate toward fascist totalitarian world views because they think they know better than everyone else, despite the fact that society and the culture, which they largely run, proves otherwise.

  2. Yes, and not many people know that. Quantum electrodynamics was kind of the last advance for the Standard Model.
    But the LHC could give it new life if it finds the Higgs.
    And the otherwise “pure math” String Theory could also get a boost. Famous for not making any testable predictions, String Theory has recently suggested that if certain particles bind at energies below that which should be needed to overcome the strong force, the close-range hypergravity prediction of String Theory might be borne out.
    So the LHC gets even more exciting.

    • An endeavor that doesn’t have testable predictions isn’t, by definition, science. Or at least science that should be funded by taxpayers. And I’m sure string theorists, who are likely feeling more heat than the climatologists right now, are busting their hump to find some way at to tie in the Higgs boson.

      • “An endeavor that doesn’t have testable predictions isn’t, by definition, science.”

        If only that was something politicians understood about AGW theories.

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