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New systems that distinguish between enemy and friendly forces were exposed by an Israeli company. Thermal Beacon Ltd. developed high-end, innovative thermal IFF (Identification Friend or Foe) emitters – the MS OMR II c and MK-IV. The first system is mounted on a fighter’s helmet, marking it, and thus distinguishing it from enemy forces. The second system is installed on buildings, vehicles and sailing vessels, enabling accurate identification by friendly forces.

In a recent experiment, the MS OMR II c system identified targets from a distance of 18 km.

Thermal Beacons are infrared emitters being used as an identification device in the thermal spectrum region (mid-IR and long-IR) for use with operatives, vehicles, yachts, pilots, police SWAT teams, search and rescue, emergency services and mountain rescue teams. Designed for outdoor operation, military demands and standards, features include a solid state optical IFF beacon, a compact beacon for thermal observation, and a long working range.

Thermal Beacons radiate in the thermal spectrum (8-12 µm and most efficiently at 3-5 µm) and do not emit radiation in the visible or the near-infrared region, according to the company announcement.

They are used as an identification device in the thermal spectrum region, for persons or vehicles. The MS (Multi-Spectrum) version allows the user to control the spectrum of radiation from only the thermal region, only the near-infrared region (for image intensifiers and SLS), or both thermal and near-infrared regions simultaneously.

According to Daniel Daeshevitz, the company’s Marketing Manager,  “Both systems are combat-proven, fully integrated and in use by several NATO forces. The small and compact systems are inconspicuous (MS OMR II c), and don’t hamper the soldier’s activities. The MS OMR II c’s capability to detect from an 18-km altitude increases the fighters’ protection in combat conditions and avoids errors of identification, thus providing an additional layer of defense that saves lives in battle.”