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Visual Stealth, a new approach

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posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 06:03 AM
Whilst skimming through the Sunday Times yesterday, I came across this interesting little article

Science invents invisible buildings, John Elliott

EVER since Superman wowed the world by using x-ray vision to fight crime, the ability to see through walls has been a dream. Now scientists believe they may have discovered the first steps towards making it happen.
Research involving microscopic crystals has prompted the theory that walls could be built using materials which homeowners could render transparent at will.

Such a discovery would revolutionise 21st-century building techniques. Contractors would be able to study pipes and wires behind the brickwork; police and soldiers would be able to spot dangers lurking behind walls.

Today scientists at Imperial College in London and the University of Neuchatel, in Switzerland, will unveil their latest attempt to achieve this vision.

Details of the mechanism were being closely guarded last night. However, an invitation to hear more about the project revealed tantalising hints.

A briefing note headed “New material developed to see through solid matter” said: “Researchers have created a new optical effect that means that solid objects, such as walls, could one day be rendered transparent.”

The effect is believed to involve the development of a material that exploits the way atoms in matter move.

Imperial College yesterday confirmed that a small but triumphant step had been taken in the laboratory, bringing mankind closer to the day when others can share Superman’s powers. The answer is not to provide people with x-ray vision but to make the buildings see-through.

A college spokesman: “The breakthrough has been done using crystals that are not visible to the naked eye under specific conditions. The potential applications of it are exciting and far-reaching, but it’s still very early days.”

Nevertheless, American military scientists are also working on developing devices which can see through existing structures.

The US Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency is developing a system called Visi Building which, researchers hope, will see through entire buildings to show the floor plan, occupants and other materials. Researchers envisage soldiers driving past a building — or airmen flying above it — in order to capture an image similar to an x-ray.

Japanese scientists have already — to an extent — turned fantasy into reality. Two years ago Susumu Tachi, a professor of computer science and physics at the University of Tokyo, unveiled an “invisibility cloak” similar to the garment used by Harry Potter, the fictional boy wizard, to conceal himself.

Tachi’s cloak appears to make the wearer’s torso vanish, revealing the scene behind. It works by using a camera to film what is going on behind the wearer and then transmitting the scene to the front of the cloak, which acts like a screen.

Experts claimed that to make an invisibility cloak work successfully would require six stereoscopic cameras and a garment containing more than 10m hyperpixels to provide the display.

I have often read of the military advancements made in the fields of plasma stealth, and the method of cloaking offered by LCD panelling. Both of these seem to have major drawbacks in that they require massive amounts of electrical or computing power.

Perhaps, by the incorporation of these 'Crystals' into todays modern composite materials, the miltary could have an easier and more workable solution. I am unsure as the specific technology behing this, but it seems that by the altering of the state of the material, perhaps by the introduction of some chemical or electrical stimulus, we could have a material able to be rendered invisible. The only drawback is to work out how to turn the fuel and the pilot invisible.

posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 07:16 AM
An LCD panel doesn't need much electric

posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 09:13 AM
Tachi's japanese invisibility cloak isnt actually anything special it's just pointing a projector at him that's attached to a camera behind him I never understood how that got so much coverage the video was impressive I guess if you didn't read how they did it.

Visual stealth would be cool if anyone ever did it without cheating aka predator style I've yet to see anything come close to that though.

I think you'd need a hell of a cpu and hundred's of nano sized cameras to do something like the movie predator on a moving object but who knows I'm no expert and first to admit it.

posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 10:31 AM

Originally posted by kilcoo316
An LCD panel doesn't need much electric

Sorry, I didnt mean to give that impression, I thought that to generate plasma stealth a large source of power was required ? Surely LCD panelling willl require immense computing power to complete the calculations required to mimic complex backgrounds, especially if moving at high speeds ?

I must admit I have a limited knowledge in this area.

posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 10:44 AM
NO it wouldn't require that much computing power. It would just have to project an image of the sky from camera's on its roof to it's belly. The only power required would be to keep it in synch. Painting the planes light grey is much better as that is the colour that the human eye cant really pick up as well in both bright conditions and overcast conditions. Especially overcast conditions.

EInk technology which is the next generation of Flat Screen panels draws even less power and if it's used on say a Blimp you would need even less power as it doesn't emit any light at all where as LCDs would light up any IR detectors like a lamp. I know LCDS don't get that hot but they still do emit wavelengths invisible to the human eye but they emit other wavelengths that are very visible to other technologies.

The thing with EInk is that if your displaying a static image it doesn't draw power. It only draws power when you're displaying a moving image or changing the static image. So if your say hovering stationary in a blimp you would be pretty much invisible to Visual, IR and if this blimp is a Hard shelled Vacuum filled version (which is what I believe the majority of the huge Black Triangles are) then you would be invisible to just about everyone except the people on board the aerostat.(think stealth)

[edit on 20-2-2006 by sardion2000]

[edit on 20-2-2006 by sardion2000]

posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 10:57 AM
I see, thank you for informing me, as I said, my knowledge in this area is limited.

So does this mean that LCD panels are only fitted to the underside of aircraft to guard against visual detection from below ? I can understand that it is easy to analyse the colour of the sky and to blend in with that, but how about the other way round with a high flying interceptor attempting to visually locate a low flying fighter/bomber ?

posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 11:06 AM
That would be more tricky as it would need to share the same space with camera's.

posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 11:23 AM
I see, so if this new material is able to be transformed to being 'invisible' from every angle, surely that would be infinitely more preferable to the current system ?

As I say, the pilot would still be visible, as would the fuel and other fluids/solids such as hydraulics and explosives, but still would be preferable. In fact, how weird would that look, to see a pilot skimming down a valley, effectively being flanked by two reservoirs of fuel

posted on Feb, 20 2006 @ 11:25 AM
The B2 has all of that internally. Here a look at the underside.

Such a plane would have to be more like the B2 rather then an F16 in order for for the effect to be complete.

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