Latest By
Category:


Armor
Artificial Intelligence
Biology
Clothing
Communication
Computers
Culture
Data Storage
Displays
Engineering
Entertainment
Food
Input Devices
Lifestyle
Living Space
Manufacturing
Material
Media
Medical
Miscellaneous
Robotics
Security
Space Tech
Spacecraft
Surveillance
Transportation
Travel
Vehicle
Virtual Person
Warfare
Weapon
Work

"We are all repositories for genetically-encoded information that we're all spreading back and forth amongst each other, all the time. We're just lousy with information."
- Neal Stephenson

Slow Glass Rod  
  A transparent glass rod that makes light travel so slowly that it can trap light within its depths.  

You've heard of burning bugs with sunlight concentrated with a magnifying glass? That's for sissies who can't figure out a different way to concentrate sunlight - by slowing it down.

He held a contraption made of a glass rod and assorted wires. Methuen sighted along his glass rod and pressed a button. A pop... and a flash!

"By applying the right e.m.f. to pure crown glass, its possible to raise its index of refraction to a remarkable degree. The result is that the light striking the glass is so slowed up that it takes weeks to pass through it in the ordinary manner. The light that is thus trapped can be released by making a small spark near the glass.

"I can shoot an hour's accumulated light energy out the front end of the rod in a very small fraction of a second.

From The Exalted, by L. Sprague de Camp.
Published by Astounding Science-Fiction in 1940
Additional resources -

Science fans will recognize one of the main properties of Bose-Einstein condensates, which can actually trap light waves, or slow them down to an inch a minute. Read a bit more about Bose-Einstein condensates; also, read about a modern experiment in which light is captured in a crystal.

Science fiction fans may recall the scenedows from Bob Shaw's 1968 story Light of Other Days.

Comment/Join this discussion ( 0 ) | RSS/XML | Blog This |

Additional resources:
  More Ideas and Technology from The Exalted
  More Ideas and Technology by L. Sprague de Camp
  Tech news articles related to The Exalted
  Tech news articles related to works by L. Sprague de Camp

Slow Glass Rod-related news articles:
  - Slow Light Will Speed Communications
  - Light-Trapping Nanodoughnut Like Slow Glass

Articles related to Material
Self-Healing Circuits From Carnegie Mellon
Dune Fans! Metal-Organic Frameworks Make Science Fiction Real
Fungi-Infused Concrete Repairs Itself
3D Printed Graphene Aerogel - So Light!

Want to Contribute an Item? It's easy:
Get the name of the item, a quote, the book's name and the author's name, and Add it here.

<Previous
Next>

Google
  Web TechNovelgy.com   

 

 

Technovelgy (that's tech-novel-gee!) is devoted to the creative science inventions and ideas of sf authors. Look for the Invention Category that interests you, the Glossary, the Invention Timeline, or see what's New.

 

 

 

 

More News

Las Vegas Humans Ready To Strike Over Robots
'A worker replaced by a nubot... had to be compensated.'

You'll Regrow That Limb, One Day
'... forcing the energy transfer which allowed him to regrow his lost fingers.'

Elon Musk Seeks To Create 1941 Heinlein Speedster
'The car surged and lifted, clearing its top by a negligible margin.'

Somnox Sleep Robot - Your Sleepytime Cuddlebot
Science fiction authors are serious about sleep, too.

Real-Life Macau or Ghost In The Shell
Art imitates life imitates art.

Has Climate Change Already Been Solved By Aliens?
'I had explained," said Nessus, "that our civilisation was dying in its own waste heat.'

First 3D Printed Human Corneas From Stem Cells
Just what we need! Lots of spare parts.

VirtualHome: Teaching Robots To Do Chores Around The House
'Just what did I want Flexible Frank to do? - any work a human being does around a house.'

Messaging Extraterrestrial Intelligence (METI) Workshop
SF writers have thought about this since the 19th century.

Nanorobots Roam Your Bloodstream, Cleaning It
Too bad they won't have lasers, though...

More SF in the News

More Beyond Technovelgy

Home | Glossary | Invention Timeline | Category | New | Contact Us | FAQ | Advertise |
Technovelgy.com - where science meets fiction™

Copyright© Technovelgy LLC; all rights reserved.