Adaptive Camouflage new Military tech

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Adaptive Camouflage new Military tech

OK the tech is still in its infancy, but it looks really good.

Just a matter of time, and if the panels were used to hide field guns, from the air and ground then you could hide an army...

More than a few filmgoers will stumble out of the new James Bond movie, Die Another Day, muttering, "Yeah, right!" about the latest splashy technological gadget in Bond land: a disappearing car.

But they ought to talk to Maurice (Joe) Langevin of Tracer Round Associates in Maryland before they laugh too hard about the implausibility of it all.

Working with his partner, Philip Moynihan of Cal Tech, Langevin conceived a plan to use plasma screens hooked up to cameras to offer a tech method of camouflaging vehicles.

This so-called "adaptive camouflage" -- since it can shift constantly to meet conditions -- is now under development by the U.S. Department of Defense, and also by private industry.

"I just dream up these items to a point where the technical feasibility is validated, and then I just let them go," Langevin explained in a phone interview.

As playful as the Bond films have often been with their technological gadgetry -- and as reckless as various Bonds have been with the goods themselves -- the series has in many ways shown remarkable respect for technology.

"Obviously the most interesting device in the new film is the cloaking device on the Aston Martin," said John Cork, coauthor with Bruce Scivally of James Bond, The Legacy.

Lightweight optoelectronic systems built around advanced image sensors and display panels have been proposed for making selected objects appear nearly transparent and thus effectively invisible. These systems are denoted "adaptive camouflage" because unlike traditional camouflage, they would generate displays that would change in response to changing scenes and lighting conditions.

The basic overall function of an adaptive camouflage system would be to project, on the near side of an object, the scene from the far side of the object. Although adaptive camouflage was conceived for use in battlefield settings (see figure), there are also potential commercial uses for example, as an electronic "window" that would display a nearby outdoor scene in an office that lacks a real window, or as a home security system in place of a door peephole.

A typical adaptive camouflage system would likely include a network of flexible electronic flat-panel display units arrayed in the form of a blanket that would cover all observable surfaces of an object that one seeks to cloak. Each display panel would contain an active-pixel sensor (APS) [orpossibly another advanced image sensor] that would look outward from the panel through an aperture that would occupy only a small fraction of the area of the panel.

The blanket would also contain a wiring harness that would include a cross-connected fiber-optic network, through which the image from each APS would be transferred to a complementary display panel on the opposite side of the cloaked object.

The positions and orientations of all the image sensors would be slaved to the position and orientation of one image sensor that would be designated a master imager. The orientations would be determined by a levelling instrument sensed by the master imager. A central controller connected to an external light meter would automatically adjust the brightness levels of all the display panels to make them conform to the to ambient lighting conditions.

The underside of the cloaked object would be illuminated artificially so that the display from the top of the cloaked object would show the ground as though in ambient light; if this were not done, then an obvious shadow-induced discontinuity would be seen by an observer looking down from above.

The display panels could be sized and configured so that a common inventory of such panels could be used to cloak a variety of objects, without need to modify the objects. Sizes and weights of representative adaptive camouflage systems and subsystems have been estimated: The volume of a typical image sensor would be less than about 1 in.3 ( 16 cm3).

A system to completely cloak an object 10 m long by 3 m high by 5 m wide would weigh less than about 100 lb ( 45 kg). If the object to be cloaked were a vehicle, then the adaptive camouflage system could readily be operated on power provided by the vehicle electrical system, without adversely affecting the operation of the vehicle.

Also now supposedly on aircraft...

The US is currently working on a more advanced stealth aircraft than the Nighthawk. In October 2002, Boeing revealed a bat-winged stealth jet called the Bird of Prey. This is rumoured to have advanced stealth features such as adaptive camouflage, but no details have been disclosed.
By netchicken: posted on 17-12-2002

well never b able to do this type of stuff! :guy
By gantly: posted on 12-6-2003

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