Russia has made no secret in recent years that they hope to serve as the go-to arms supplier for nations that find themselves outside of the U.S.’s good graces. As American allies lined up to purchase the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter, Russian developers worked feverishly to build their own fifth-generation competitor — not necessarily to square off against the F-35 in the skies, but rather to square off on the international weapons market. Russian missile defense platforms have likewise been heavily touted by Russian backed media outlets, hoping to secure more international sales and inject some much-needed funding into their national defense apparatus.
Russia’s efforts to sell their wares on the international market have led to a number of significant announcements made by high ranking Russian officials about the viability and success of their advanced weapons technologies, almost always followed closely behind by evidence to suggest that their claims were either exaggerated or utterly baseless. Vladimir Putin himself recently touted the nation’s new nuclear-powered cruise missile, developed to have a nearly unlimited range that would allow it to circumvent most existing missile defense systems. Of course, it was soon revealed that the platform has yet to conduct even a single successful flight (despite actually being decades old technology). Russia’s Uran-9 ground combat drone, designed to bolster Russian ground troops with an autonomous Terminator-like weapons system, was also touted as a success in Syria, securing a place in Russia’s annual military parade as a result — only to have stories leak soon thereafter about the platforms utter failure to reliably function in a combat environment.
Now, continuing Russia’s trend of announcing groundbreaking new technologies to garner headlines, Russian state-owned media outlets have recently begun reporting on a new “stealth camouflage” system that will soon be unveiled by Rostec, a state-owned defense supplier. The camouflage system, according to Russia’s claims, will change its visible patterns and even colors to better blend in with the environment and can be deployed not just on vehicles, but even as a part of Russian soldier’s uniforms.
“At the Army-2018 forum, Rostec will demonstrate a prototype of the electrically-controllable material that can change its color depending on the surface that needs to be camouflaged and on the environment. The coating can reflect color changes and imitate complex graphical depictions, up to the leaves wavering in the wind,” Rostec CEO Sergei Chemezov said.