Members of the tractor beam team: Yana Izdebskaya, Anton Desyatnikov, Vladlen Shvedov, Andrei Rode, Yuri Kivshar and Wieslaw Krolikowski (Image: Tim Wetherell)
The tractor beam suspends a small particle over an optics table (Image: Australian National University)
In a move that is sure to warm the hearts of those in the upper echelon of the Galactic Empire, researchers have taken tractor beams from the realm of science fiction to the realm of science fact. The researchers from the Australian National University (ANU) have developed a laser beam that can move very small particles up to distances of a meter and a half using only the power of light. Unfortunately this means it won’t be able to reel in anything the size of the Millennium Falcon, and the fact it won’t work in the vacuum of space probably won’t help matters either, but it’s a remarkable breakthrough nonetheless.
Other Images from this Gallery