Saturday, October 16, 2021

Invisible Soldiers: New Camouflage Sheet Provides Israeli Soldiers With A Cloak Of Invisibility – WATCH

The Israeli Special Forces will be able to blind the adversary’s peering eyes with the camouflage technology that makes the person wearing it on the battlefield nearly invisible.

The technology, developed by Israel-based Polaris Solutions Ltd, provides multispectral concealment to the soldiers at battle in both thermal and visual was founded in 2009 by two former IDF SOF fighters to increase soldier battlefield survivability.

Called the Kit 300, the product uses thermal visual concealment (TVC) material to combine microfibres, metals, and polymers that renders soldiers on the battlefield literally invisible to a range of thermal cameras.

The Israel-based defense company is known for its expertise to create innovative and effective technology for survivability solutions, with SOFs around the globe using their products. Polaris manufactures a wide range of camouflage and concealment product lines for varied usages such as weapons, vehicles, single or grouped personnel, troop, etc.

Announcing the Kit 300 in association with the Israeli defense ministry, Polaris said the product is the first of its kind and such a level of invisibility was yet to be developed anywhere in the world. The new generation camouflage will be used by the elite commando units in the IDF.

Kit 300 at work (Pic: Israel Ministry of Defence)

The advances in camouflage technology failed to keep pace with the innovation happening in night-vision systems and thermal imaging. Witnessing the proliferation of such devices among the Lebanese group Hizbullah during the 2006 war, Asaf Picciotto, co-founder, and CEO of Polaris Solutions was inspired to start innovating and designing camouflage coverings for the IDF.

The use of TVC has enabled the developers to help guard the soldiers both from the naked eye and with thermal imaging equipment. That makes it ideal for deployment in a range of countersurveillance missions.

“Camouflage nets haven’t changed too much in the past 50 years. “We wanted to bring in a new type of material,” Yonatan Pinkas, director of marketing at Polaris Solutions, told The Media Line. “So TVC was born.”

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Not just individual soldiers, Kit 300 can cover and disguise a whole force, for instance, if the forces are proceeding towards a ground maneuver. The camouflage cover enables the fighters to wrap themselves in it and advance on foot under the enemy’s nose without being identified.

Kit 300 has been tested recently by an IDF division which described the trails as a success. “This is a system that you need to know how to work with, but the training is simple and you just have to choose its relevant color – desert shades for use in the southern arena or green shades for the northern arena,” a senior Israeli defense ministry official was quoted as saying by a news website.

“The camouflage sheet can be shaped like a rock enabling a sniper to hide under it. The sheets can also be joined to form a camouflage stretcher to carry a wounded person without him or the soldiers carrying him being identified,” the official added.

File:Flickr - Israel Defense Forces - Karakal Winter Training.jpg - Wikimedia Commons
File Image: Israel Defense Forces

Besides cooperating with the Israeli government, Polaris Solutions is working with government agencies and special forces of multiple countries and its Kit 300 is expected to gain popularity worldwide. The product is globally also called Jag Hide.

The militaries around the world have been constantly innovating in cutting-edge camouflage technologies although there’s yet to be a perfect design in place that can make troops completely invisible in battle.

Multiple camouflage techniques against visual cameras exist in the world, however, invisibility from thermal imagers has always remained a challenge considering it’s the main technique employed by an adversary in identifying and locating soldiers on the ground.

Multiple nations are involved in the research and development of a wide range of invisibility cloaks that can hide soldiers, vehicles, tanks, and even aircraft from all kinds of identification techniques.

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BAE Systems’ Adaptiv vehicle cloaking technology, Hyperstealth Biotechnology’s light-bending Quantum Stealth material technology, and the Japanese invisibility cloak developed by Dr. Susumu Tachi are just some of the technologies developed so far.

ADAPTIV is a unique camouflage system that allows a vehicle to blend into its surroundings, effectively becoming invisible to hostile thermal imaging systems.

It can also make a tank look like other objects, such as a cow or a car, or bushes and rocks. The high-tech camouflage system uses modules, which look like cells in a honeycomb to cover the flanks of an armored vehicle.

The modules are made of elements that can be cooled or heated up very quickly as well as controlled individually, allowing different patterns to be created, claims BAE Systems on its website.

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Another innovation, which the HyperStealth Biotechnology Corp calls the “Quantum Stealth,” incorporates a material that can bend light around an object to make it invisible. It can hide a person, a vehicle, a ship, spacecraft, and buildings, according to its designers.

Then there is the Russian company Rostec, which is working on a full-body exoskeleton with enhanced stealth features to be employed in the service of the Russian Army. Called the Ratnik-3, the exoskeleton features an eyeglass with the capability to provide reconnaissance information with thermal imaging capabilities to the wearer.

The US Army is also hopeful of inducting two new camouflage designs to prevent thermal imaging identification from the local company Fibrotex.

The first is the Ultra-light Camouflage Netting System (ULCANS) which provides protection from infrared and thermal imaging sensors, and another is the Improved Ghillie System (IGS) camouflage designed specifically for snipers.

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