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Wednesday, March 7, 2012

ReadyOne Developing New Camouflage Kit

With all the big news surrounding the U.S. Army Camouflage Solicitation Effort, one would think that this is some end all be all solution to the ultimate concealment for military uniforms. But, we are talking about wide scale issuance to one of the largest defense forces in the world. The scope of the project at hand is well outside the bounds of providing the best camouflage known to man.

We know that effectiveness is the key when choosing the proper patterns to outfit our soldiers, however there certainly has to be some prudence in providing a cost effective option. This is especially the case in an age focused on tightening defense budgets with giant shears aimed at cutting any added costs. However, this is not keeping down innovation as private sector military industry is still looking for ways to protect troops with burgeoning capabilities in concealing all aspects of a military force's signature from enemy observation. 


It was reported today in the El Paso Times that the local military uniform manufacturer ReadyOne Industries will be working with Polaris Solutions think tank to develop camouflage systems for vehicles, troops, and equipment that will make them disappear among various spectrums. In doing so, they will be hiring three former US Special Forces members to help in the project that will create a means of concealing from visual detection as well as UV and Infrared Thermal imaging. 

With the Department of Defense looking to a growing influence from Special Operations Command, it can easily be seen how this tool can provide for a smaller yet highly functional means of response to any threat. Freedom of movement and the element of surprise are key factors in moving toward a successful mission. The actual report is a bit cryptic, but the key players can certainly be seen as competent companies to provide such a camouflage kit as proposed. 

ReadyOne Industries was most recently mentioned here for their involvement in the development of the Army Combat Pant as they will be developing a prototype pant including any requested improvements for final field testing. They have years of experience as a military contractor in respect to product engineering and quick prototype development gives them the resources to accomplish this task. They are also part of the AbilityOne program which received Federal set asides for a blind or severely disabled labor force. 

Their agreement with the Polaris Solutions LTD provides the synergy with a company founded by former members of Israei Defense Force Special Operations, which  has their own capability in the development of advanced camouflage systems. Their patented "Camouflage Device" created by Isaf Picciotto consists of a substrate of material that can be formed in to a shape i.e. cover a particular object, but then be reshaped at a later time for multi-use purposes. This is a multi-layered system that integrates the different elements needed to provide the end resulting concealment system. This image below gives a good representation of this.

Camouflage Device Patent Drawings
The actual visual aspect of the Camouflage Device sounds just like a normal camouflage pattern on fabric, so this is not necessarily ground breaking in that aspect unless they have further developed their technology.  A key factor is that the material can be shaped just like an object in the environment such as a rock, bush, tree, or other large object that would be comparable in size to the person or equipment being concealed, so that it just blends into the terrain. Of course the camo pattern would have to fit in with the targeted object as well. We have provided their full patent description as provided to the Canadian Intellectual Property office, which outlines the different layers involved and how the system works to conceal all levels of potential surveillance. Below you can see their example of the product in use mimicking a rock with comparable objects in the area.

The actual camouflage kits that are to be developed by ReadyOne are yet to be explained, but we would venture to speculate that their work with Polaris Solutions LTD would integrate this Camouflage device in some fashion. Their patent on this technology was submitted a few years back, so they certainly could have made further strides in its capability, but even the information in the description does not give the full story to its capabilities. With the prospected multi-million dollar capability with this product for multiple military and other government agencies, we would presume they have something big on their hands.