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You Won’t See’Em: Designers Come Up With New Ideas to Make Tanks Invisible

© AP Photo / Alexander ZemlianichenkoRussia's new T-14 Armata tank
Russia's new T-14 Armata tank - Sputnik International
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Twenty Armata tanks boasting reduced visibility and high-tech armor protection have successfully been tested in Russia, Deputy CEO of Uralvagonzavod Vyacheslav Khalitov announced on Thursday.

“We are using GALS-technology — a special coating with reflective surface that does not allow the determining of what the object is, no matter what means of detection the enemy employs: optical, radar or infrared,” Khalitov said in an interview with svpressa.ru internet portal.

The special coating makes the new tanks are four times less visible to enemy radar and three times less detectable by heat sensors.

Russian tanks - Sputnik International
The Best is Yet to Come: Russian Tanks to Become ‘Invisible’, Grenade-Proof
As a result, the enemy, even equipped with the most advanced radar and infrared sensors, could mistake an approaching Armata for a small car or not see it at all.

Russia is not the only one testing this type of secret technology turning tanks invisible on the battlefield.

It’s been ten years since the British first tested technology which made their Challenger-2 main battle tank vehicle seem to completely disappear.

The breakthrough used cameras and projectors to beam images captured from the surrounding landscape on to a specially-adapted tank – coated with silicon to maximize their reflective qualities, The Sun wrote.

The result was that the naked eye could only see what was behind the tank.

Scientists from Britain’s BAE Systems are developing technology using electronic ink to camouflage tanks.

According to a 2011 report in The Telegraph, high-tech sensors are fixed to the body of the tank mirroring the vehicle's surroundings and making it essentially invisible.

"Highly sophisticated electronic sensors attached to the tank's hull will project images of the surrounding environment back onto the outside of the vehicle enabling it to merge into the landscape and evade attack," The Telegraph’s defense correspondent Sean Rayment wrote.

"The electronic camouflage will enable the vehicle to blend into the surrounding countryside in much the same way that a squid uses ink to help as a disguise," Rayment added.

Not to be outdone, Poland recently unveiled its own advanced stealth main battle tank, Obrum PL-01 which uses so-called Adaptiv technology to protect it from detection.

An array of hexagonal Peltier plates on the surface can be heated and cooled to project a desired image, such as the background and or a separate object, making the tank invisible.

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