A Time Masker – Bending Light to Mask An Event

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The Time Masker - scientists created a lens of not just light, but time. Their method splits light, speeding up one part of light and slowing down another. It creates a gap and that gap is where an event is masked. “You kind of create a hole in time where an event takes place,” said study co-author Alexander Gaeta, director of Cornell’s School of Applied and Engineering Physics. “You just don’t know that anything ever happened.”

Cornell University scientists are on to something amazing – a time masker. They have figured out how to make an entire event invisible. They can hide an event for only 40 trillionths of a second, according to a study appearing in Thursday’s edition of the journal Nature. While it’s only a blink in time, it’s the beginning of a whole new way of looking at invisibility. It has incredible potential. If they can do it for 40 trillionths of a second, they can do it for seconds, minutes, hours eventually.

We see events happening as light from them reaches our eyes. Usually it’s a continuous flow of light. In the new research, however, scientists were able to interrupt that flow for just an instant.

Other newly created invisibility cloaks fashioned by scientists move the light beams away in the traditional three dimensions. The Cornell team alters not where the light flows but how fast it moves, changing in the dimension of time, not space.

They tinkered with the speed of beams of light in a way that would make it appear to surveillance cameras or laser security beams that an event, such as an art heist, isn’t happening.

Another way to think of it is as if scientists edited or erased a split second of history. It’s as if you are watching a movie with a scene inserted that you don’t see or notice. It’s there in the movie, but it’s not something you saw, said study co-author Moti Fridman, a physics researcher at Cornell.

The scientists created a lens of not just light, but time. Their method splits light, speeding up one part of light and slowing down another. It creates a gap and that gap is where an event is masked…Read more: Newsvine

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