The idea is for the radar antenna to send out a burst of radio energy, which is then reflected back

by any object it happens to encounter. The radar antenna measures the time it takes for the reflection to arrive, and with that information can tell how far away the object is. The metal body of an airplane is very good at reflecting radar signals, and this makes it easy to find and track airplanes with radar equipment. The goal of stealth technology is to make an airplane invisible to radar. There are two different ways to create invisibility: y The airplane can be shaped so that any radar signals it reflects are reflected away from the radar equipment. y The airplane can be covered in materials that absorb radar signals. y Most conventional aircraft have a rounded shape. This shape makes them aerodynamic, but it also creates a very efficient radar reflector.
The round shape means that no matter where the radar signal hits the plane, some of the signal gets reflected back:


A stealth aircraft, on the other hand, is made up of completely flat surfaces and very sharp edges. When a radar signal hits a stealth plane, the signal reflects away at an angle, like this:

All known non-metamaterial transparent materials possess positive and µ. The time-averaged Poynting vector is antiparallel to phase velocity. However.y In addition. The Doppler shift is reversed: that is. a light source moving toward an observer appears to reduce its frequency. but as n2 is negative. many metals (such as silver and gold) have negative at visible wavelengths. and µ. the wave fronts are moving in the opposite direction to the flow of energy. refractive index n is often used in . The only exception is when the plane banks -. have positive values for both permittivity andpermeability µ.there will often be a moment when one of the panels of the plane will perfectly reflect a burst of radar energy back to the antenna. Although the optical properties of a transparent material are fully specified by the parameters practice. A material having either (but not both) or µ negative is opaque to electromagnetic radiation (see surface plasmon for more details). which can be determined from convention the positive square root is used for n. surfaces on a stealth aircraft can be treated so they absorb radar energy as well. such as glass or water. This means that unlike a normal right-handed material. Cherenkov radiation points the other way. the rays will be refracted on the same side of the normal on entering the material.\ Metamaterials are artificial materials engineered to have properties that may not be found in nature. . By Metamaterials with negative n have numerous interesting properties:     Snell's law (n1sin 1 = n2sin 2). The overall result is that a stealth aircraft like an F-117A can have the radar signature of a small bird rather than an airplane. since this property is not found in any non-synthetic material. Almost all materials encountered in optics. The primary research in metamaterials investigates materials with negative refractive index The greatest potential of metamaterials is the possibility to create a structure with a negative refractive index.

Sign up to vote on this title
UsefulNot useful