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Sound cloaks enter the third dimension

Concept could lead to sonar-defeating submarines or noise-cancelling highway barriers

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9:47am, March 29, 2013

A simple plastic shell has cloaked a three-dimensional object from sound waves for the first time. With some improvements, a similar cloak could eventually be used to reduce noise pollution and to allow ships and submarines to evade enemy detection. The experiments appear March 20 in Physical Review Letters.

“This paper implements a simplified version of invisibility using well-designed but relatively simple materials,” says Steven Cummer, an electrical engineer at Duke University, who was not involved in the study. Cummer proposed the concept of a sound cloak in 2007.

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