In a bid to aid special services soldiers, military scientists in France have developed a ‘heat-vision’ serum. Up until now, the only way for spotters and scouts to see out into the inky blackness was to use heavy light amplification goggles or infra-red goggles.
Sérum de vision thermique, or SVT, is being tested on subjects to determine its efficacy for low-light operations.
“This is not light amplification. This serum works to replace the chemicals within the rods of the retina. They become sensitive to lower frequencies, specifically infra-red. This gives the user the ability to detect form, movement and contrast in pitch black environments,” says Jacques Clauzel, Chef Chirugien Optique in charge of the research, “It’s a temporary effect, lasting about two hours before the chemicals are metabolized.”
Preliminary results are positive, he says. While refining the serum, hallucinations were common among subjects. ‘Ghosts’ and ‘Anomalies’ were cause for concern, however these were shown to be actual hot-spots in the testing area.
“It can be unnerving seeing the invisible without the aid of equipment. With training, the soldiers can come to grips with it.”