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I love watching cartoons and I love when they feature cool science gadgets. In an episode of Spongebob, Patrick and Spongebob buy invisible spray to pull pranks on people. They spray themselves and as they become invisible and pretend to be ghosts. They mention it's a paint that stains clothes and is washed off by water.

In the future, would this be feasible? Is it too much like clarketech? I know invisibility can in principle be achieved through meta-materials, but could a aerosol spray or paint achieve the same effect?

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    $\begingroup$ Aren’t they in water? $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    Sep 26 '17 at 6:11
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    $\begingroup$ Welcome to Worldbuilding, if nobody did that already! While every Stack Exchange site has its own distinct differences, Worldbuilding is “more different” in some ways. In particular, you ought not Accept an answer before waiting at least 24 hours. A full explaination can be found on this meta post. $\endgroup$
    – JDługosz
    Sep 26 '17 at 6:12
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    $\begingroup$ You should wait at least 24 hours before accepting an answer. Of course it's only up to you to decide what helped you but people using WorldBuilding.SE live all around the globe in different timezones. By giving all of them the chance to look at your question and the answers given you can increase the quality of the answers. Furthermore some people might be discouraged from answering when they see you already found your solution. You can un-/accept as often as you like. Please take the tour and visit the help center to learn more about the site. Have fun! $\endgroup$
    – Secespitus
    Sep 26 '17 at 6:12
  • $\begingroup$ The reverse of an invisibility spray is a big feature of the Phillip K Dick novel "Ubik" en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ubik This spray reveals and renews the nature of reality $\endgroup$
    – Vorsprung
    Sep 26 '17 at 8:14
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Metamaterials, like the light bending coating someone is studying, are designed by carefully arranging elementary units of different substances into space/layers/dots.

Spray coating is essentialy a random statistical arrangement of said substances, and it is highly unlikely that from a random arrangement you can pick the only one that works as light bending structure.

P.S.

oh the irony!

Patrick and Spongebob buy invisible spray [...] it's a paint that stains clothes and is washed off by water.

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  • $\begingroup$ You can work around this assumption by making the spray "clever". Instead of dead particles, assume self-aggregating nanobots. $\endgroup$
    – Sudix
    Sep 26 '17 at 4:23
  • $\begingroup$ Invisible stains, which are washed off by water? Go figure! $\endgroup$
    – user
    Sep 26 '17 at 13:11
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No.

Even assuming you could make a light bending spray paint, you close your eyes and mouth when getting sprayed so when done, you'd end up as some weird disembodied face floating around.

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  • $\begingroup$ If it was light bending then you could keep your mouth closed and wear sunglasses that have been sprayed. $\endgroup$ Sep 26 '17 at 3:57
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    $\begingroup$ Sunglasses covered in the spray would bend the light, not let it through meaning you can't see. $\endgroup$
    – Thorne
    Sep 26 '17 at 4:07
  • $\begingroup$ Well, we can get around that by spraying it only "mostly", with a mechanism similar to a one-way-glass. So, your face would be still visible, but only dimly, while whatever is behind you is brightly visible. That way, you become seemingly invisible, as the bright light automatically overlays the dim light $\endgroup$
    – Sudix
    Sep 26 '17 at 4:22
  • $\begingroup$ Hmmm. It's complicated isn't it?! $\endgroup$ Sep 26 '17 at 22:26

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