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American COP Jan/Feb 2012 Digital Edition - Page 40
Fewentitieshaveasmuch experiencewithnightvisionas theIsraelidefenseandsecurityforces, andMeprolightistheirprimesupplier. TheNOANYxshownherewas introducedinSeptember2011 attheDefense&Security EquipmentInternationalExpo (DSEi)asahandheldorweaponmountedthermalsightsuitablefor submachinegunsuptolightmachineguns. Withthreeuser-configuredsightingreticles plus2xand4xdigitalzoom,itwilldetect andengageman-sizedtargetsto900yards. Theunitweighslessthan1kilo,runssilent,emitsno detectableheatandoperatesfor7hoursonfourAA batteries.Pricingwasnotpublished,butwe’llbetit’snotcheap. Lt. John Morrison, SDPD Ret. he target was the 5'x6' raw concrete butt of an old bunker, 76 yards in the distance on a clear, starlit night before moonrise. The background was a dullgreen wall fronting a thick, dark tree line. The butt protruded from grey streambed rocks supporting thin, secondary-growth shrubs, which obscured about 40 percent of the target. The scenario could be a drug deal, a burglary or a fugitive search. The drill was to perform a random-turning disorientation with eyes closed and a $1,200 4X light-intensifying (LI) night vision ‘scope in place, and then simply find the target. It wasn’t that simple. On average it took seven seconds to isolate the target 40 and detail was fuzzy at best. Activating the integral IR illuminator only made things worse. Reflection and “scatter” from the moving leaves of the shrubs made it almost impossible to define the target. A more powerful auxiliary IR light worsened the problem. A thermal viewer easily isolated a human form moving across the field of view. Still, it was difficult to pick out the target or surrounding features. Then we applied “day optics”; the Steiner 7x50 Military R binoculars and a Rapid Reticle 1-4x24mm CQLR riflescope. The target was isolated quickly and easily, and details were sharp enough for gross facial identification. When the gibbous moon rose, NV-gear performance rose with it, and WWW.AMERICANCOPMAGAZINE.COM • JANUARY/FEBRUARY2012