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Soldiers of the future may very likely be deployed without night vision goggles or any other illuminating devices during nighttime operations. Nanoparticle injections may one day be able to grant humans the ability to see in the dark, without the need for heavy and expensive equipment.
The above assumption comes from a study published by researchers from the University of Massachusetts Medical School and the University of Science and Technology of China.
As part of the study, nanoparticles that are able to convert near infrared light into visible light were injected into the eyes of mice, making it possible for them to see in the dark.
This was tested by training mice to swim through a maze while being guided by triangular signs. The mice that were injected with the nanoparticles were able to navigate through the maze and find their way out of it in the dark.
The nanoparticles were tightly bound to the eyes of mice for up to 10 weeks, with no clear long term side effects.
The researchers are confident that the nanoparticles can also work with humans.
The nanoparticles would be a temporary solution for future human soldiers. After being injected, soldiers would be able to improve their nighttime vision for several weeks without having to carry around bulky gear.
Military.com mentions that the nanoparticles may even be designed to enable soldiers to see other wavelengths. For example, it may be possible in the future for soldiers and customs officials to see smuggled radioactive materials.