Have Israeli researchers cracked the code of invisibility?

An operational cloaking chip can be an extension of basic technologies.

November 13, 2017 15:28
1 minute read.
Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.

Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.. (photo credit: ISRAEL'S FOREIGN AFFAIRS MINISTRY)

Researchers at Beersheba’s Ben-Gurion University of the Negev have accomplished a breakthrough in manipulating light to render an object such as an optical chip invisible.

According to the recent study published in Nature Scientific Reports, the researchers invented a method that deflects and scatters light away from the “cloaking” chip’s surface so that it is not detected.

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An operational cloaking chip can be an extension of basic technologies such as radar-absorbing dark paint used on stealth aircrafts, local optical camouflage and surface cooling to minimize electromagnetic infrared emissions or electromagnetic wave scattering.

“These results open the door to new integrated photonic devices, harnessing electromagnetic fields of light at nanoscale for a variety of applications from on-chip optical devices to all-optical processing,” said Dr. Alina Karabchevsky, head of BGU’s Light-on-a-Chip group, and a member of the BGU Unit of Electro-Optical Engineering.

“We showed that it is possible to bend the light around an object located on the cloak on an optical chip. The light does not interact with the object, thus resulting in the object’s invisibility.”

The next step for researchers is to overcome the major challenge of developing a prototype.

BGU is at the heart of Beersheba’s transformation into the country’s cyber capital, where multi-national corporations utilize BGU’s expertise to generate innovative R&D.

A third of the country’s engineers graduate from BGU, a number destined to rise as the IDF moves its bases south.

To accommodate that growth, the university has launched a campaign to double the size of its main campus.

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