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So called "carpet cloaks" are the first technology to succeed in hiding objects by deflecting light across a range of wavelengths. Two groups described different cloaks last week at the International Quantum Electronics Conference in Baltimore, Maryland.

Invisibility cloaks work by deflecting light waves so the light that reaches the eye shows no trace of the hidden object. Conventional optical materials can't do this, but a dozen years ago John Pendry of Imperial College London showed it was possible to bend light around objects by building materials made of components smaller than the wavelength of the light.

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