Quarterly Newsletter

Connecting ANVM Members, their Customers and Friends of Night Vision
Q3/2022                                                                      30 September 2022
Looking Ahead ...
... by John Domalski, President. The upcoming quarter 4 of 2022 looks to be busy for us as an Association. In addition to our 2022 Annual Meeting to be held on 1 December at the Marriott Crystal Gateway Hotel in Arlington, Virginia, we will also have what has become known as the ANVM Event at Fort Belvoir, Virginia on 15 and 16 November.

Regarding the Annual Meeting, it will be held “live” for the first time since 2019. Based on the success of the past two meetings which were held virtually via Microsoft Teams and which enabled increased participation by individuals from member companies, every attempt will be made to also “broadcast” this meeting via M/S Teams. As of publication of this newsletter, an audio-visual contractor serving the hotel has been contacted with this request. A definitive answer has not yet been received, and indications are that it will not be positive. Therefore, it is likely that volunteers from member companies may be needed to perform the tasks associated with using M/S Teams. Regardless of the M/S Teams feature of the meeting, please know that the live meetings in 2019 and previously always have proven to be outstanding networking opportunities for both members and Government attendees. Based on that, please bring individuals from your companies to the meeting as appropriate—5 to 6 from General members and 2 to 3 from Associate members.

I have started contacting potential Government individuals regarding speaking at the meeting. To date, invitations have been sent to: BG Christopher Schneider, the recently appointed PEO-Soldier; COL Troy Denomy, PM-IVAS; COL Scott Madore, PM-Soldier Lethality; Dr. Darrell Hooper, Air Force Research Lab; Dr. Rohith Chandrasekar, DARPA; Dr. Joshua Borneman, Chief Scientist of the EO Technology Division at NSWC/Crane and Dr. Tim Morgan, also from NSWC/Crane. It was Dr. Morgan who spoke about the revolutionary I Cubed (I3) Tube at the 2019 meeting. If there are other individuals who you would like to have speak at our meeting, please provide me with names and contact information as soon as you can.

Regarding our annual business meeting that will also be held on 1 Dec, we will have a key decision to make regarding whether or not we hold a Congressional Outreach Event in early 2023. We last did this in 2019. Also, Hall of Fame inductions of Michael J. Iosue and Michael D. Atwood will take place.

I will distribute a registration link to reserve rooms at the Marriott Crystal Gateway during the first week of October. During the evening of the day before the meeting (30 November) I will host an informal meet-and-greet at the hotel’s lobby bar from approximately 5:30PM to 8:00PM. I hope many of you will be able to participate.

Moving on to the Fort Belvoir event, 21 companies and 48 individuals have registered to date. Regarding companies, this is down only slightly from the 24 who advised they would be participating when I first announced the event in late April. I hope every member company gives serious consideration to participating because I am learning that C5ISR RTI is planning on this event being BIG. They will have shuttles running between the various buildings of the secure, within-the-fence area of Fort Belvoir to get people to our display area (6,800 square feet of tent space). They are planning to offer tours of their facilities (probably intended to impress senior Government leaders and possibly even Congressional members and staff, but not us); and they are interested in having 1-on-1, in-depth technical meetings with any ANVM member company requesting such a meeting.

Every individual person attending this event must register. I distributed the registration link via email to all ANVM Board of Directors members on 18 August. I will send it out again next week. Deadline for registration is 1 November. Hope to see many of you there.
Member News
New ANVM Website Coming Soon

A committee was commissioned during the 2021 Annual Meeting to refresh our website. In collaboration with Bell Collaborative, our new website goes live prior to the Annual Meeting.

Key details of ANVM's new site include:

  • Employees of member companies will have unique individual login capability.
  • A slider will be added to the home page -- for showcasing member companies and upcoming events.
  • Government partners will also have access to the secure data repository for uploading briefings and accessing white papers.
  • Member companies can update their listing in the 'Member Directory' at will.
  • Pre-cleared ANVM members, are able to click on the website-enabled 'live link' to view the Annual Meeting.
  • A new ANVM logo.

ANVM seeks (public domain) imagery of member products in use for display on our home page. Please contact Jim Winkel ( if you have imagery to share or require additional information.

Our heartfelt prayers and thoughts abound for the families and friends of these recently deceased members

Kevin Grealish, Technical Director for BAEs Lexington Business Center, succumbed to cancer surrounded by his loving. In addition to serving our industry for 35 years, Kevin enjoyed skiing and mountain biking with gusto. You may remember and honor Kevin by visiting this page.

Brent Langsdorf of Nightline recently passed from this life. Brent served our country as a Soldier and spent several decades training countless users of our night vision equipment during successful careers with Nightline and Litton. Brent enjoyed spending time with his family and friends -- touching many lives within his community. To learn more about Brent and his life, please visit this page.

Looking Back ...
... Has anyone ever wondered how the night vision industry in the U.S. got started? If you have, please read on. Even if you haven’t, you might still want to read on as it is an interesting story.

The first piece of usable night vision equipment for U.S. armed forces was an infrared telescope known as the Metascope. (Not to be confused with the AN/PAS-6 which had the same name, but followed about 20 years later.) Per one of the original Metascope’s key developers: “Metascope was a high-sounding name which didn’t mean anything.” Actually it was a catadioptric telescope that had a revolutionary phosphor at its image plane that converted received infrared radiation into visible light. The IR radiation was provided by a separate, active source that in essence flooded the area to be observed with IR radiation. This approach to seeing at night later became known as Generation 0 image intensification. The size of the Metascope was 6 inches long, 5.5 inches wide and 8 inches high. It weighed 4.6 pounds. The below photo shows how a Metascope was held and used operationally.

Development of the Metascope began in the early 1940s and was sponsored by Division 16 of the National Defense Research Committee. The first units were produced in Spring 1943 by students and faculty at the University of Rochester (Rochester, New York). Those individuals were associated with the University’s Institute of Optics which was headed at that time by Dr. Brian O’Brien. The developer of the IR sensitive phosphor was Dr. Franz Urbach, an Austrian, who fled his country to escape the Nazis. Other key individuals involved in this effort were: John Evans, Hobart French, Robert Hopkins, Frederick Paul and Harold Stewart. The students were put on a three-shift-a-day basis in the Institute’s optical shop grinding and polishing optical components. The faculty worked similar three shifts at a nearby company—Samson United Corporation—assembling the units.

In addition to Samson United, other companies to become associated with the Metascope included Eastman Kodak Company, also located in Rochester, and probably a new start-up company founded in 1945 in Garland, Texas known as Varo, Incorporated. Varo was established by Mr. Austin Stanton in order to perform on a contract he had to manufacture a “black box” for the military. At that time, “black light” was a name for infrared illumination which, as stated above, was essential for Metascope operation. The black box/black light similarity seems to imply a connection between the two. The Varo name is now long gone and the facility in Garland today is part of L3Harris Technologies.

The quantity of Metascopes manufactured was at least 5,000, but may have been more as the number produced was reported to be “very substantial.” Production took place during the World War II years and for several additional years thereafter. The only confirmed operational use of the Metascope was by the U.S. Navy in the Battle of Okinawa, 1 April to 22 June 1945.

  -- John Domalski
Association of United States Night Vision Manufacturers
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