The invisibility cloak we saw a few years ago is now available to buy. There is a catch, though. It is not the patented, made-for-warzones technology by Hyperstealth Biotechnology. This one here, simply called Invisibility Shield, is from a British startup called, well, Invisibility Shield Co. and it is definitely not made for warzones.
It shouldn’t be confused with Hyperstealth Biotechnology’s invention that can hide physical objects, as well as infrared, ultraviolet, and thermal signals. As far as the Invisibility Shield goes, it is basically lenticular technology but without an image. Here’s how it works:
“Each shield uses a precision engineered lens array to direct much of the light reflected from the subject away from the observer, sending it sideways across the face of the shield to the left and right. Because the lenses in this array are vertically oriented, the vertically oriented strip of light reflected by the standing/crouching subject quickly becomes very diffuse when spread out horizontally on passing through the back of the shield. In contrast, the light reflected from the background is much brighter and wider, so when it passes through the back of the shield, far more of it is refracted both across the shield and towards the observer.”
Clearly, it will not perfectly cloak a person or an object because the background where the shield is blocking will appear a tad smeared and if a subject is too close to the shield, you can actually make out there is something there. But it does appear to function as intended. I guess the effectiveness depends very much on the background and also the lighting.
Anyhoo, the Invisibility Shield is being crowdfunded on Kickstarter where you can pick up one for £49 and up (about US$63). And no, it is not a scam. Well, at least the product isn’t bogus. The tech is real.
But before you go ga-ga that is so “cheap”, you have to know 49 quid is for a small size version that is slightly larger than an A4 size paper. The full-size shield, which measures 950 x 650 mm, is going for 299 pounds (US$382) during the campaign.
The campaign has met its set funding goal which means, the product is a go. All there’s left now is for the creator to make good on its promise for December 2022 delivery. Also, you may want to know that someone actually DIY-ed an invisibility shield a while back.
Images: Kickstarter (Invisibility Shield Co.).