Early French Night Vision Devices ?

Jemiba

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Where can I find information about French night vision devices directly after WW II ?
When and where such devices were used in the post WWII French armed forces ?
From what I've found, most of the early ones used the activ system, so needing an
IR light source. But the German Luftwaffe had used the "Spanner II" and "..IV",
which were passive systems, though with mediocre success only, as is said.
I would suppose, that French systems from that era were based on earlier allied or
German developments ?
 

lastdingo

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The Spanner series used the hot exhaust of piston engines for detection and became ineffective once exhaust flame dampeners were commonplace.
The sensitivity of passive uncooled thermal sensors was insufficient for night vision for decades to come.
 

Jemiba

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Ah, thank you for that clue. I was thinking about the Spanner device, as it was passive, whereas others
like the Vampir were active, using an IR illuminator. Would an active system has been suitable for use
from a helicopter ?
 

lastdingo

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Active emitters are visible at night even using simple filters in SVD rifle sights.

A very large emitter or two may have sufficed to give enough effective range to an active IR vision system, but the utility would be most questionable.
 

dan_inbox

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Jemiba said:
an IR illuminator. Would an active system has been suitable for use from a helicopter ?
Any "active IT illuminator" really is a searchlight, only operating in different wavelengths.
It can be used from a helo, MBT or anything else, with the drawback of all projectors: if someone has the right filter, you're a bright beacon.
Significant drawback, but still better than being blind.
 

lastdingo

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Kind of like this https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Leigh_light though without visible light emissions because of a filter.
That's how it worked with the Vampir illuminator on SdKfz 251 IIRC.

Also,


Nowadays the approach is still used to help the infantry's passive night sights in overcast nights, though with ILLUM munition.
View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qRDUABcPLEI
 

Jemiba

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The comparison with the Leigh lights was an eye-opener for me, thank you ! You probably had to know before,
where to look with such a device, so not suitable for scouting a larger area from above, though the danger perhaps
wouldn't have been that big during the first time, when its use may still have been more or less secret.
 

phil gollin

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.

I can't really help re. early French projects, but as far as UK, USA and Germany goes, the situation is somewhat analogous to radar (only less advanced) in as much as the UK and USA concentrated on less sophisticated but useable devices (the UK fielded many types) whilst the Germans went for few but better devices.

Look up "Tabby" (UK) and "Sniperscope" USA (both nations had others)


Tabby;

View: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4bHVCMt_dIc




Variations of the Tabby equipments were used in various specialist roles even quite widespread. Apart from the driving aids, night fighters used them to identify friendly aircraft, the RN used them for communications with raiding parties and one of the oddities included an airborne reconnaissance just prior to the crossing of the Rhine to see whether the Germans had and working IR transmitters (IR searchlights).


Sniperscope :


The USN had a very simple "beacon" type IR signalling system for ships almost ready at the end of the war ("Nancy") but it was limited as the calling ship had to make the receiving ships aware that a message was about to be sent by radio or visible light.

.
 

FFX

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Here is a SPIE's Paper that may be of interest to you:cool:
 

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