From: Ed Rudnicki <email@example.com>
Subject: Anti Starlight Camouflage Clothing
Date: Thu, 8 Jun 1995 00:32:03 GMT
This was forwarded to me by someone in the USMC who says he can't
post himself. These words are not mine.
The Scout/Sniper section of the Marine battalion I was in in Desert
Shield/Storm did some experiments with the 'desert night camou coats and
trousers'. We were all quite skeptical that these new suits did any
good. The tests involved comparing visibility of Marines (standing,
kneeling, prone, and moving) wearing the chocolate chip (day cammie) and
green night cammie outfit. The subjects were observed on two nights:
one that had 100% cloud cover (very dark) and the other with minimal
cloud cover and about 50% lunar illumination. Observers used the naked
eye, PVS-4s, PVS-5s, and the infrared TOW sight.
Results: Across the board the green 'desert night cammie'
coveralls increased the chances of being observed. Perhaps this suit was
effective vs the older PVS-2 systems but vs all the other systems it was
less than ineffective. The only time the green 'night cammie' suit did
not assist the observers was during the 'dark' nights when observed with
the naked eye.
The bottom line: someone bought a bill of goods with those
suits. Some have stated the qualities of the suits could not have
withstood numerous washings - the ones we wore were BRAND new, not
been worn previous to the tests, and were kept dry.
Two interesting other results:
1. A couple of Marines did not get the word (what's new) and brought
sets of winter overwhites (as in they brought the kit you'd expect to
see men wear in Norway) - actually they brought them intentionally to see
what use they would be. Against both the PVS-4 and PVS-5 the overwhites
were extremely effective - under both lunar illumination conditions. We
even had Marines move to within 20 meters of the observers (from 200
meters) without being seen - wearing overwhites. Of course this was in
Saudi Arabia (grid ??????) which had sand that was pretty clean. Once we
got into the oilfields I am sure it would not have been as effective.
2. The infrared TOW sight was superb and no outfit mentioned under no
lunar illum conditions was able to hide. BUT - Marines are ingenious and
someone brought out a space blanket (not the cheap ones you get at the
end of a marathon but the thick one with a green backing). If you
carefully wrap yourself in the space blanket the TOW sight was not
effective - I do not recall which side of the blanket needs to be towards
the TOW sight but it did make a difference. Unfortunately, the space
blanket vs the illumination intensifier sights (PVS types) was not
effective. We figured that the thermal qualities of the space blamket
kept the Marines heat in and thus defeated the TOW IR sight.
I will always chuckle when I see or hear of the desrt night
camouflauge parka and trousers. Next thing we will get is blue paint for
the bottom of our boots ????