Scientists have found a way to make solid objects "invisible" in the odd way of allowing light waves to cross solid materials as if they didn't exist at all.
The reason we see things is because light waves bounce into objects when a source of light shines into them and the human eye sees them.
Research from TU Wien and Utrecht University has found a specific set of light waves that can penetrate the body.
Professor Stefan Rutter of the Institute of Theoretical Physics at TU Win University explained that "each pattern of light waves changes and deviates in a very specific way when you send it through an unregulated medium."
Professor Rutter and Professor Allard Musk, University of Utrecht, used a layer of sterile zinc oxide powder - randomly arranged nanoparticles - and calculated exactly how light distracted by powder, and how it could have dispersed if the powder was not opaque.
The researchers found that a certain type of light wave, that is, static dispersal light positions, were recorded on the other side of the powder using a detector, meaning that they penetrated the sterile object, though slightly weaker than when it was initially sent.
Moreover, the researchers found that there was a theoretically unlimited number of light waves. That means that although hard to calculate, it can be found.
This new development could be very useful in developing imaging equipment in biomedical applications. Professor Rutter told the Independent that "One aspect that we are very excited about is the fact that the areas of light that we have found in our work are not only limited to the movement of light outside objects, but include even the movement of light within these objects."
Professor Rutter added that there was still research to be done, because biological systems were filled with movement, such as blood flow through the body, which made it difficult to calculate the patterns needed to pass light through them, since measurements must be made faster.
Currently, penetration can help scientists who want to examine micro-objects, such as cells. Professor Rutter believes that it is only a matter of time before measurement tools become fast enough and cheaper to open up more complex applications.