SoundBender makes objects levitate using sound waves

Most people perceive levitation as some kind of inexplicable force of nature. But, as it turned out, it is quite feasible for those who know the laws of physics well.

A group of researchers from the University of Sussex (UK) has developed the SoundBender device, which generates dynamic ultrasonic waves that, bending around an obstacle, create the effect of levitation.

In the design of the system, special acoustic metamaterials were used, capable of creating a sound field with high spatial resolution. In turn, phased arrays provide the necessary amplitude that controls the propagation of this field.

With SoundBender handy, you can manipulate solid and liquid objects - and even smells. So far, in laboratory conditions, the capabilities of the device are limited to overcoming small fixed obstacles, but as this technology improves, the sizes of objects will increase, and over time it will come to bending around and moving objects.

Already, the developers are offering to adapt their know-how, for example, for new board games and interactive museum exhibitions.