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October 10, 2013

Which super power would you choose?

Creating force fields could become a reality.

By Cbr Rolling Blog

When we were younger, we all wanted to have super powers. Oh, who am I trying to kid? We all still want super powers!

The ability to fly, super strength, x-ray visio, or just super human bakery skills. We want them all. But, if you had to choose just one, which would it be? It’s a tough one.

If I could fly, I’d be able to soar to the top of really high trees to rescue kittens that had got stuck. If I had super strength I’d be able to hold up a building during an earthquake, giving people just enough time to run to safety. If I had x-ray vision I would be able to see if any bad guys were carrying weapons so I could tell the police. And if I had super bakery skills I could eat lots of cake.

The dreary reality is that we don’t get to choose. Not really. It’s not going to happen. There is one super power that could be possible to gain, though. How about the ability to create a force field?

Bristol University researchers have developed what they describe as a ‘forcefield’ that mimics the feel of objects in mid-air by using sound alone.

The new UltraHaptics system uses ultrasonic transducers – small speakers which produce waves of ultrasound – to create an invisible layer of ultrasonic vibrations above a display.
This creates small tactile sensations in mid-air directly on the user’s hands, making them ‘feel’ the object without touching it.

The process, called haptic feedback, creates a tactile sensation for virtual objects – much in the way some smartphones vibrate when the user touches a virtual button.

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Okay, so it might not exactly stop a bullet (please don’t try that!) but it’s a start. It’s still pretty cool. And you can always get cake down the supermarket.

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