Last year I saw some great talks at Phononics 2015, which covered research in the exciting area of metamaterials. A new breakthrough by engineers Associate Professor Liang Dong and Professor Jiming Song at Iowa State University sees the development of ‘meta-skin’. A flexible and more importantly, tunable device that could make objects undetectable to radar.
Small liquid-metal ring resonators are embedded between sheets of silicone to create electric inductors, while the space between them act as electric capacitors. Together they trap and suppress radar waves at a set frequency. As the meta-skin is stretched, the size of the rings alter and the frequency the device can suppress changes, making it’s properties tunable.
One day these meta-skins could be used to coat the surface of stealth aircraft – but this may be a little while off yet. The researchers hope to continue their work towards this goal by reducing the size of the device and extending the frequency of the waves it can cloak to the visible and infra-red range. Their full paper is published in Scientific Reports.
Read more on Metamaterials
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