IronVision Helmet Can See Through Armored Tanks

IronVision 1

The IronVision system is a form of augmented reality for armored tank drivers and their crew. Special visors display what is outside the tank. Where ever the viewer looks, the image adjusts for their POV.

IronVision 2

Being able to link up the gun’s targeting and other data is a huge advantage and a definite game changer.



Nicholas C

Co-Founder of KRISSTALK forums, an owner’s support group and all things KRISS Vector related. Nick found his passion through competitive shooting while living in NY. He participates in USPSA and 3Gun. He loves all things that shoots and flashlights. Really really bright flashlights.

Any questions please email him at nicholas.c@staff.thefirearmblog.com


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  • Major Tom

    Next step = being able to drive (and shoot) an AFV from a third person view?

    • KestrelBike

      Only when it’s not on Hardcore mode.

    • LCON

      partner it with a drone tethered behind the vehicle.

      • Stan Darsh

        Add in electrochromic polymerization to give it Predator style camouflage and now we are getting there.

  • BattleshipGrey

    I’d like this for my house.

    • Wolfgar

      I was thinking the same thing

  • Badwolf

    Can this thing see through an armored blouse or skirt?

    • iksnilol

      Asking the important questions.

  • LCON

    functionally this could mean that totally unmanned turrets on Tanks could become the true norm reducing the size of tanks and AFV’s.

    • Phil Hsueh

      That, I think, would depend on whether or not Western militaries would want to go with an auto-loader or not since the only way to have an un-manned turret is to use an auto-loader, something western militaries, with the exception of the French, are loathe to adopt.

      • LCON

        The French, South Koreans, Japanese all use Autoloader in there MBT’s The new Turkish Tank will have one and the Polish PL01 concept is centered around it.
        The Abrams and M8 light tank both experimented with autoloaders.The key issues that put the Kibosh on fitting more western tanks is first the weight.
        a 150-200 pound man is lighter than the lightest Autoloader.
        second is rate of fire a good human loader can fire about 15 round per minute a autoloader gets about 12… Still I think this one is a non issue.
        Third issue is the ability to switch ammo types. on the fly. which is an issue.
        The biggest Primary issue with the Autoloader is not the Autoloader but the Magazine.
        The Most common Autoloader design is based on the Carousel magazine. The US tested this in the M1TTB1 Now the Russian will claim that this is the best design ever. but the west not so much. If you can punch into the carousel and cook off the ammo the tank will blow apart around it. It’s a bomb at the center of your tank, For a manned tank the crew compartment sits on top the magazine, for the Armata the turret is unmanned
        Abrams stores it’s ammo in a compartment attached to the rear of the Turret with powered firedoors and blowout panels M1A2 packs 42 rounds in this location and it’s designed so that if the ammo is cooked off the explosion will be isolated away from the crew.
        The french Leclerc tank and K2 as well as Japanese auto loaders use a Bustle mounted autoloader which offers some of the same protection but they sacrifice some of that by placing spare rounds in the hull where it may come under fire. … The Leclerc has 22 rounds in the bustle magazine on the Turret with 18 in the hull. The Japanese type 90 half in the turret magazine bustle half in the front of the turret. ROK K2 16 in the turret 24 in the hull.
        The PL01 concept is based around an unmanned turret but, a similar setup 40 rounds a dozen or so in the autoloader most in the hull. Another Unmanned Autoloader setup is the Falcon Turret refit for Challenger 1 tanks of Jordan. 17 rounds in the Autoloader additional ammo in the hull.

  • vwVwwVwv

    can i have it for my car, nightvision, see anything….

  • Uniform223

    looks like the HMD DAS used on the F-35.

    • Bal256

      Despite the hate that the 35 gets on the Internet, there are a ton of developments that have wide ranging applications. For example guidance systems to increase carrier landing efficiency. Targeting systems used to improve other aircraft such as the F18 and F16. A better stealth coating that reduces maintenance time that is going to make its way to the F22 and possibly stealth eagle if it actually gets picked up. And many of these were picked up from leftover tech that was being worked on but couldn’t be implemented on the F22 originally due to budget constraints.

      If you take the technological package as a whole it’s pretty encouraging that even with all the money sunk into it, a lot of good products aside from just one expensive plane came out of it.

      • John

        >that is going to make its way to the F22 and possibly stealth eagle

        >possibly stealth eagle

        >stealth eagle

        Are you serious? They’re actually deciding to make a stealth version of the airplane that’s already been in service for, what, 40 years?

        • Joe Schmoe

          No one is buying it, it’s dead in the water

        • Phil Hsueh

          It makes sense for current Eagle users that can’t afford a true 5th gen aircraft. With the Stealth Eagle the idea is that you get a gen 4.5 aircraft that while not as good as a true 5th gen fighter it is better than a 4th gen, is much cheaper than a 5th gen, and you get a plane you’re already familiar so the transition is easier. It would also serve as a nice stop gap to make up for all of the F-22s we didn’t get and to replace the legacy 15s we still need until the 35s start rolling off the production line in earnest.

          • Stan Darsh

            I would love to see an F16 Stealth Falcon go against the F35.

          • Uniform223

            The “Stealth” Eagle that person was referring too was Boeing’s Concept of the “Silent Eagle”. No one has since picked up on the idea of the whole “Silent Eagle” package.
            Though it would SEEM cheaper than a 5th generation fighter, the total cost and development would actually be the same AS a 5th generation fighter aircraft. Boeing has also tried to pitch the idea of taking a non stealthy aircraft and advertise a concept version and claim it to be stealthy *points to Advanced Super Hornet*. Again no one was/is really biting at it (The USN looked or is looking at possible CFTs for current Super Hornets/Growlers).
            One of the main defining characteristics of a 5th generation fighter is STEALTH. Stealth MUST BE inherent in the aircraft’s design from the very beginning. It is not something that you can slap onto a non-stealthy fighter and claim that it is stealthy. You can reduce some parts of its RCS but you’ll NEVER really get there… you wont even come close to F-117 levels of RCS that way.

      • Uniform223

        They’ve already outfitted F-22s with the same RAM from the F-35 to reduce maintenance times and cost.

    • Joe Schmoe

      It’s actually the same company producing the helmet for the F-35 🙂

  • Well it’s about ding-dong time we catch up to something that’s been standard issue on giant robots since the 2000s of the 1980s.

    • Loess

      The helmet even looks vaguely like the one from the Patlabor movie.

  • noob

    the norwegan army says it’s neva been dun befo

    • Joe Schmoe

      THere is a gigantic difference between the Oculus which is just VR goggles (or a screen strapped to your head), and this HMD system which allows you to see through the image as well.

  • gunsandrockets

    Very interesting story.

    I don’t know if people appreciate just how much a factor crew vision is for tank design and combat tactics.

    Of course the real breakthrough is going to be RPV tanks. I think the reason RPV tanks are not already as ubiquitous today as UAV bombers, is only because of bureaucratic inertia. It was only because of the demanding pressures of the wars in Afghanistan and Iraq that UAV acceptance broke through institutional barriers to become so ordinary today.

  • kzrkp

    hardware half as good as a VIVE for 10000x the cost, I’d bet

    • Joe Schmoe

      Not comparable, the VIVE is a just a screen strapped to your head, this is see through with ability to slew accurately targeting systems.

      • kzrkp

        I know, but having seen .mil quality HMDs I would be shocked if the quality isn’t taxbuck sucking garbage

        • Joe Schmoe

          Haha, that’s a different story 🙂

  • Joe

    I was thinking more along the lines of an Apache HUD helmet for commander/gunner, but this is better. Like others have said, for manned armor this could eliminate crew inside the turret, and if you took a large percentage of the turret armor and used it to protect crew in the hull… sounds a lot more survivable. Periscopes remain for redundancy.