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magine a scene from a 1940s crime movie. Backlit by a streetlamp, a shadowy figure lurks within a luminous fog. A new invisibility cloak could render that person even more mysterious by making him disappear. The new, simpler cloak overcomes many of its predecessors' limitations, researchers say. But it works only in foggy conditions, and some researchers question whether the technique should count as cloaking at all.

"It's a very ingenious idea," says Shuang Zhang, a physicist at the University of Birmingham in the United Kingdom who was not involved with the new work. "It solves a lot of the major problems" with traditional cloaks.

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