posted on Mar, 17 2006 @ 11:06 PM
My Problem is that they don't do this in a way that requires the tactical camo system to function from multiple aspects with user or camera shift of
an MPEG type quality video as proof of zero photoshop type image editing as well as 'shimmer' of display lighting speculars at odd perspective
Nor indeed is any attempt to defeat multispectral imagers made which will /surely/ multiply at a similar rate while ALSO, potentially doubling or
tripling detection ranges, especially at night, as a functionally effective counter-LO technology solution.
They are not even attempting to 'project dark' as in pavement or shadow in a mixed environment where edge geometries are more linearized and hard
(as is typical of MOUT).
Given the time to set up a WFOV camera repeater and tune the brightness and hue levels on a large (17" should do, 19 would be better) high def
display under similar controlled conditions; I could probably give a single human, lying behind the stripped down flat panel plasma monitor,
reasonable protection. From say 50-100'.
With access to high speed VCSEL driven AMLCD a well funded R&D organization should be able to do this kind of stuff within a semiflexible 'shooting
blind' type partial wraparound or screen.
So that a man could stand behind a fairly wide curtain type effect and be safe against a moving observation point like a vehicle.
The problem then becomes keeping the optical effect 'personally constant' around the folds of an equipment pack or web gear. And making sure that
items which MUST protrude forward in providing both Mie specular relief and independent shadow zones _on the protective item_ (like weapons and sensor
apertures) do so without their own telltale signature effects.
What I also don't see is a system that is mobile. That allows junior to turn side on and raise his hands as if holding a rifle pointed 90` away from
the viewer. Or something which says "Okay, so it's late afternoon and he's casting a 4-10ft shadow while running with a 40lb Interceptor, 10
pounds of water and maybe some 'camping gear'.
Before falling to the earth to execute a prone, two target, shoot-and-roll drill followed by a knee-hard clamber back to his/her feet.
All of which together argues against the notion of this being an infantry mobile 'chinese dragon' system on a frame or even as a hardshell laminate
(if it was the latter, /that/ would be something to brag about).
And without some kind of mu-mu effect to regularize the soldiers shape WHILE being able to sustain crushing and stretching forces associated with
/typical infantry combat use/, this thing is nothing more than a very expensive FO protective camo net with restricted usage profiles.
I'm interested. But I have my doubts as to the appropriateness of a system which provides invisibility in broad daylight to the kinds of 'threats'
which represent civillian human norms of vision. Rather than something which can notably defeat the already augmented capabilities of true military
opfors (I2 and I2R plus MTI radar among others). Especially as a 'black' system capability, there is more potential for Police State abuse than
real gain by it's covert possession, IMO.
Similarly, if we /have to/ move to robotic apertures as a function of combat on the battlefield going 'invisible', will not the shift to robotic
firing platforms and indeed -maneuver- in fact instantly obsolesce the infantryman anyway? If /that/ happens, will it not be wiser to invest in
cheapening the platforms and improving their sensor functions (given the ranges and multiple MAWS type fire warning) rather than trying to transfer
optical LO as well?
I doubt seriously if an AMLC presenting a flat-square of illumination is going to be less visible at infrared levels of any kind. Thus 'cheap active
camo' may in fact represent only the tip of the iceberg in terms of economics on force transformation to a largely zero-manned-presence on the
OTOH, one area which sounds like it may have quite a bit of potential is in the field of flying vehicles. Especially flying wing or deltoid (typical
drone) shapes whose viewing aspect is a relatively constant-broad, flat, 'plate' like effect against a distant background already isoluminated as a
Where DEWS and intelligent optical systems represent a near 100% SSPK threat in a post 2010 environment; it seems to me that the combination of
platform value and removal from typical 'grunt variable' environment conditions would favor the employment of Optical LO on surveillance platforms
otherwise impossible to hide (but able to leverage the battlefield with targeting for numerous other GPS/Inertial pointed fires as
dollars-in-warfighter-out 'safe-by-standoff' application).
It should be noted that the Predator, in addition to being a biologic impossibility as an arboreally agile threat, also employed truly execrable field
craft and was possessed of weapons and enablers that would not have been much of an advantage against a real SWO team.
Either in the jungle or especially the city.
He skylined himself on high branches. He moved with unbelievable grace through heavy foliage. He fired a plasma-ball type weapon which was HUGELY
visible. And his so-superior active camouflage was actually brighter AND optically discontiguous with the background.
Basing an all too human desire for the ability to do bad things with impugnity on the exploits of a _dramatic_ creature which never suffered the
physical or moral imperilment of it's acts is an unwise thing.
Better to see if a sniper firing a robotic (masted) 12.7-25mm weapon station '15ft up and 2km out' . Or a hyper accurate mortar round that can be
called down by _effective_ networked comms 'to within inches from 6km away' (with troops in contact less than 20ft from impact) are not
better-bullets solutions that run a lower risk of unwanted technology transfer while giving the same /kind/ of capability. At lower standoff cost.