Newsletter

Quarterly Newsletter

Connecting ANVM Members, their Customers and Friends of Night Vision
Q3/2021                                                                     30 September 2021
Looking Ahead ...
... by John Domalski, President. The past three months have seen a few changes in our collective outlook, but some definitely are not positive. First and foremost, the Joint Service Night Vision Integrated Process Team Meeting scheduled for 5 – 7 October 2021 at Naval Surface Warfare Center/Crane has been cancelled and rescheduled for 28 – 30 June 2022. The reason for the change: COVID. Crane is advising that everyone who registered for the October event will automatically be registered for the June event.

We have also been anticipating a show-and-tell event at U.S. Army Night Vision and Electronic Sensors Directorate (NVESD), Fort Belvoir, Virginia. This event is now considered unlikely due to continuing work-from-home conditions at NVESD and their efforts to understand and deal with the Federal Government’s recent vaccination mandate for all Federal employees.

Planning for the Association’s 2021 Annual Meeting on 2 December 2021 in Arlington, Virginia is underway with the first item of business being a decision regarding continuing with current plans to hold a hybrid meeting including both “live” and “virtual” components, or reverting only to a virtual meeting like last year. Due to the preponderance of negative news reporting regarding the COVID Delta Variant and a rising number of new infections across the country, I asked members of the Board of Directors on 14 September to vote on this question. As of 24 September, 84% of them have voted. The final requested date for submitting votes was 28 September, but that date is being revised to 30 September, the publication date of this newsletter. So, if you have not already voted, please get your vote submitted today. A decision will be forthcoming soon.

For the Annual Meeting to date, the following individuals have been invited to speak:

ARMY
  • MG Chris Donohue, Commanding General, 82nd Airborne Division
  • Colonel Chris Schneider, Deputy for Acquisition & Systems Management to the ASA(ALT)
  • Colonel Troy Denomy, Program Manager, IVAS
  • Colonel Doug Copeland, Program Manager, Soldier Maneuver & Precision Targeting
  • Colonel Loyd Beal, Program Manager, Terrestrial Sensors
MARINE CORPS
  • Lt. Colonel Mark Braithwaite, Program Manager, Infantry Weapons
NAVY
  • Dr. Joshua Bourneman, Chief Scientist for Electro-Optics, NSWC/Crane
  • Mr. Jason Mathis, Manager, Expeditionary EO Systems Branch, NSWC/Crane
  • Dr. Tim Morgan, Scientist, EO Technology Division, NSWC/Crane

For the Congressional Outreach Event we are considering in early 2022, there is nothing new to report. Hopefully, COVID will have retreated sufficiently by then so as not to interfere with this event. In the meantime, to achieve some contact with Congress, I am attempting to get a member of the professional staff of the Senate Armed Services Committee to speak at the 2021 Annual Meeting (in addition to those listed above).

Regarding Hall of Fame nominations, there are still only two—Mr. Mike Iosue and Mr. Mike Atwood. Both have been approved for induction by the evaluation committee and we will be voting on them at the 2021 Annual Meeting whether it is held live or virtual. I will be distributing resumes for both of these individuals to Board of Directors members well prior to the meeting date.

Finally, I reported in June that I am attempting to work with the National Museum of the U.S. Army to create an exhibit of night vision equipment at the museum. That effort has progressed with the addition of Dr. Jim Bald of NVESD now working with me. We are trying to locate three specific pieces of equipment: the Korean War vintage M3 Sniperscope, the AN/PVS-4 Individual Weapon Sight and the Thermal Weapon Sight-Light that uses an uncooled IR sensor. If your company has any of these items tucked away in a back closet or storage cabinet, please let me know. I will do everything possible to ensure that all donations to the museum are properly recognized.
Feature Story
A Conversation with Erik Fox

The Association recently caught up with Erik Fox of Elbit Systems of America, as he and a colleague were dashing off to an airport. Erik's easy going demeanor, candor and servant-leadership are on full display as Mr. Fox provides perspective on our industry.

Read on...

Member News
Elbit Systems of America providing upgraded night vision goggles for U.S. Marines through 2022

FORT WORTH, TEXAS April 20, 2021 – United States Marines rely on Elbit Systems of America’s lightweight night vision systems known as the Squad Binocular Night Vision Goggle (SBNVG) to provide added clarity, agility, and lethality. This is a major upgrade to the USMC’s legacy night vision device, the PVS-14. This advancement was initiated in 2019 under an Indefinite Delivery/Indefinite Quantity (IDIQ) contract. Elbit Systems of America received an approximately $41 million order from the USMC for the delivery order under this IDIQ, to continue replacing the Marines’ legacy monocular night vision systems with SBNVGs through March 2022. All orders will be fulfilled from Elbit Systems of America’s Roanoke, Virginia facility.

Read the 2020 USMC article on SBNVGs



L3HARRIS TO DELIVER ENVG TECHNOLOGY TO THE US ARMY

Londonderry, N.H. — The U.S. Army has awarded L3Harris Technologies (NYSE:LHX) a $100 million order for the Enhanced Night Vision Goggle – Binocular (ENVG-B) system that will enhance soldier situational awareness, mobility, survivability and lethality.

This marks the second delivery order L3Harris has received from the U.S. Army for the ENVG-B Program of Record (POR), which has a total value of $442 million. Since 2018, L3Harris has delivered more than 6,000 ENVG-B systems to the Army as part of both the POR and Directed Requirements contracts.



A very hearty welcome to our newest members!

ANVM continues to grow and is pleased to welcome ActinBlack and Edmund Optics to our family. We now have 31 members in our association.

To learn more about our new arrivals, please read below and visit their websites.

ActinBlack -- headquartered in Fort Worth, Texas

ACTinBlack manufactures night vision systems of our own design that are accessible to various OEMs. We strive for interoperability with many different subcomponents to produce a wide range of configuration possibilities to solve the most challenging customer requirements of performance and budget.


Edmund Optics -- headquartered in Barrington, New Jersey

Edmund Optics has been a leading global manufacturer and supplier of optics, imaging, and photonics technology that has served a variety of markets including Defense, R&D, Industrial Inspection, Life Sciences, Biomedical and Semiconductor since 1942. EO designs and manufactures a wide selection of optical components, multi-element lenses, imaging systems, and optomechanical equipment, while supporting original equipment manufacturer (OEM) applications with volume production of stock and custom products. The company employs over 1,000 employees in more than nine countries across the globe and continues to expand.

EO takes pride in helping customers from prototype to volume production, and specializes in creating cost-effective solutions that meet customers’ specifications, timelines, and budgets. Whether requirements include stock optics, a build-to-print custom optical component, expert application engineering to optimize the design, or a completely custom design to customer-supplied requirements, EO’s engineers can create ideal solutions for each unique optical challenge. Every step of the way, Edmund Optics is committed to ensuring product and procedural quality.


Association News

Important Dates:
  • October 1st: Cut-off date for voting members to weigh in on the 'virtual' vs. 'live' Annual meeting decision
  • Mid-October: Anticipate a decision regarding the Annual meeting
  • December 2nd: Annual meeting
Looking Back ...
Having been associated with the night vision industry since 1985, I have seen a lot of changes in the equipment our companies make. For example, the only similarity between the first night vision goggle to be widely fielded, the AN/PVS-5, and the latest, ENVG-B, is the fact that they are both binoculars. The PVS-5 could not be flipped-up from the soldier’s face, could not be wirelessly connected to a rifle sight and even the thought of uncooled infrared imaging at the time of the PVS-5 probably was unthinkable.

One thing, however, simply has not changed and that is the topic of night vision humor. Humor! What the heck could night vision humor possibly be? The night vision business is a serious one; we save soldier's lives; we contribute substantially to the defense of the country. Where is there even a remote need for humor?

Well, let me tell you. Though not a big part of our industry, a night vision joke has been in existence since at least the mid-1980’s. It is attributed to LTG John Woodmansee who retired from the Army in 1989. He was trained as an armor officer and a helicopter pilot. He was awarded the Silver Star Medal, five Distinguished Flying Crosses, two Bronze Star Medals and 39 Air Medals for his service in the Vietnam War where he flew more than 1,500 combat hours. If all those awards were not more than enough to mark a distinguished career, he is also believed to be the originator of the only night vision joke ever heard.

The joke goes as follows and pertains to the efforts made by some unknown Army General to enable the troops under his command to get the most out of the new night vision goggles (PVS-5) that were beginning to come into the Army inventory in the late 1970’s/early 1980’s. In order to accomplish this, the story goes that this General had his troops sleeping during daylight hours and performing their operational tasks during nighttime hours. This was so that their internal body clocks would become accustomed to being awake during the night and they would be more effective.

One night, the General was out checking his troops when he came upon one young, enlisted man who was performing guard duty. The General greeted the young soldier by saying: "Evening young tiger...how ya doin'?" The enlisted man replied: "Real good, General, real good."

The General next said: "Dark night out tonight isn't it?" The enlisted man replied: "Yeah, General...real dark."

Next, the General said: "Son, I can't help but notice you're wearing sunglasses! Why are you wearing sunglasses?"

Without hesitating, the young, enlisted man replied: "General, when you're cool, the sun is always shining."

There it is. Maybe there are others. If you know one, please share it.   -- John Domalski
Association of United States Night Vision Manufacturers
The quarterly newsletter is intended to strengthen our association through improved communication. We hope you will find the newsletter useful and encourage your fellow colleagues to subscribe, by visiting the ANVM website. Please submit content (press releases, interesting articles, matters impacting our industry and comments) to Jim Winkel, editor of ANVM's newsletter.   jwinkel@nightvisionassociation.org
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