U.S. physicists managed to create the first two dimensional invisibility cloak:
The new cloak, which is just 10 micrometres in diameter, guides rays of light around an object inside and releases them on the other side. The light waves appear to have moved in a straight line, so the cloak – and any object inside – appear invisible.
The cloak was built by a team led by Igor Smolyaninov at the University of Maryland, and borrows some ideas from the first theoretical design for an invisibility cloak, published by Vladimir Shalaev from Purdue University, West Lafayette, Indiana, US, earlier this year.
Their breakthrough comes just a year after US and British physicists created an invisibility cloak that worked in the microwave region of the electromagnetic spectrum. At that time, a visible light cloak was thought to be years away because of the much shorter wavelengths produced in the visible spectrum.
"At optical frequencies, [wavelengths] get very tiny, and the range of properties available from materials is limited," says John Pendry, a physicist at Imperial College London, and a member of the team that produced the microwave invisibility cloak.