Always One Mission Ahead

Harris Night Vision Technologies

Defy the Darkness

The Science Behind Night Vision


See the Clear Difference

Gen 2 vs Gen 3

Harris Gen 3 systems deliver significant advantages for warfighters rapidly moving through varying mission scenarios. Technologies in our image intensifier tubes are far superior to Gen 2, allowing warfighters to see more detail at a greater distance in low- and varied-light conditions. Forces can recognize and identify threats faster, increasing mission performance while significantly lowering risks. Harris Gen 3 image intensifier tubes reduce costs, while delivering greater reliability, longer life clarity and fewer replacements.

Lower Total Cost of Ownership

Our simulated comparison shows that Gen 3 image intensifier tubes outlast Gen 2 tubes 4 to 1, resulting in significant cost savings. They are more reliable, lasting 4 to 5 times longer than Gen 2 tubes and deliver a greater level of performance including enhanced clarity especially in no and low-light scenarios.

Gen 3 tubes last 4 to 5 times longer than Gen 2 tubes

0 Hours

After 2,500 hours,
Gen 2 performance is
significantly degraded,
requiring replacement
Gen 2
Gen 3 tubes
exceed 10,000 hours
of usage
Gen 3

This is a simulation and is for demonstration purposes only.

60 Years of Industry-Leading Innovations

Since World War II, U.S. and allied forces in 99 countries have turned to us for a critical tactical advantage—night vision. Our legacy of innovation began with ITT, evolved into the digital realm with Exelis in the 21st century and continues today at Harris as we enter a new era of the networked battlespace.

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1959

The first traveling wave tube is shipped from our Roanoke, Virginia plant. Early Gen 0 night vision aids were first used during WWII and the Korean conflict, and required an infrared illumination device to light up the target area.

1966

The U.S. Army awards a $4 million contract for Gen 1 tubes for use in starlight scopes during the Vietnam War. The tubes were the first to intensify ambient light instead of an infrared source.

1969

Development begins on Gen 2 night vision goggles in Roanoke, Virginia. This new generation of intensifier technology benefitted from introduction of the Microchannel Plate (MCP). The MCP improved image quality and reduced weight and size, allowing the design of smaller goggles and handheld devices.

1972

Early Gen 0 and Gen 1 night vision technologies were too heavy and impractical for aviation use. By the early 1970s, our engineering advancements provided the first night vision goggles and nightscopes for pilots of fixed or rotary wing aircraft.

1978

A year of significant growth, with the opening of a new administration building, workforce reaching 730 and sales hitting a record $40 million.

1982

We received the first production contract for the Gen 3 AN/AVS-6 aviation night vision goggle. This latest generation featured new Gallium Arsenide photocathodes, giving warfighters threat detection over greater distances and in darker conditions. The addition of a protective MCP ion film expanded tube life and reliability.

1987

Soldiers aboard Black Hawk and Chinook helicopters arrive at ITT facility to pick up 47 ANVIS aviation goggles and then fly off into the dark.

2005

We started development of the Enhanced Night Vision Goggle for the U.S. Army. This breakthrough technology optically combined images from two sensors, providing improved mobility, Situational Awareness and clearer target identification through an overlay of thermal and image-intensified night vision.

2006

Capacity expansion project is in full swing, including the addition of 19,000 sq. ft. of building space, 60,000 sq. ft. of renovations and three acres of additional parking.

2007

The 1,000,000th Gen 3 intensifier tube is manufactured in Roanoke.

2011

ITT Night Vision engineering and production becomes Exelis Night Vision.

2012

We launched the i-Aware® TM-NVG family of night vision solutions. These innovative solutions, the F6045 and F6044, keep commanders and tactical edge forces connected with real-time sharing of tactical intelligence. Warfighters can instantaneously capture, upload and share graphics and video. They also have access to full-color UAV feeds, GPS information and target locations. The F6045 has an added fusion of infrared and image-intensified capabilities and remains today’s only night vision goggle equipped with a digital camera.

2014

We introduced enhanced white phosphor night vision solutions with superior resolution, performance and operational life.

2015

Harris Corporation acquires Exelis.

2016

We debut the F5032 Lightweight Night Vision Binocular featuring industry-leading close-focus range, giving near-eye clarity to read detailed intelligence, aid in medical support and operate radios in low and no-light environments. Low-profile engineered to reduce warfighter burden, the binocular is equipped with an integrated IR illuminator and vertical viewing technologies to prevent visioning shutoff during critical scenarios.

2017

Continued technology partnerships result in our introduction of the F7030 clip-on night vision weapon sight – one of the most sensitive and advanced night vison scopes available for military use today. Developed in conjunction with Knight’s Armament Company (KAC), the F7030 ensures the accuracy of the day scope boresight. The refractive lens provides high-performance light collection in a lightweight design and features the patented Single Interchangeable Battery®, delivering 24 hours of continuous operation.

The Power of Choice

Illuminate your mission with white or green phosphor

Each mission and warfighter has unique tactical demands.
That’s why Harris offers options for white or green phosphor in our night vision solutions.

Slide to see the difference


White phosphor delivers images in black and white detail, which may appear more natural to the eye. In some situations, users claim seeing greater contrast between objects, along with higher image resolution at greater distances.

Green phosphor capitalizes on a wavelength which optimizes the brain’s perception of detail and contrast. Green falls exactly in the middle of the eye’s color spectrum, allowing users to better detect and interpret night time scenery.

Our Night Vision team is dedicated to product quality and performance.

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