Research into night vision devices based on passive IR started in about 1927-28. Until 1940, only the Red Army NIIST worked on this subject, but in 1940 BTU began to test night vision devices to drive cars at night on the suggestion of "Svetlana" factory staff.
As a result, spectacle-shaped night vision devices were produces and tested at the "Svetlana" factory and GABTU proving grounds.
As a result of the trials, the following was determined:
- The device can be used for driving during a dark night when there is no fog, dust, or snow.
- The device shows vertical items well, such as people, posts, large rocks, telegraph poles, etc, but it is impossible to see the road, which makes it hard to orient and drive confidently.
I consider it necessary to report that IR devices will not attain higher effectiveness. In order to finally resolve the issue, I think it is reasonable to order a device with the attached specifications to put any questions to the test. After that, we can finally summarize our opinions about the feasibility of using night vision devices to drive cars.
Assistant Chief of the 3rd Department of the GABTU BTU, Engineer-Lieutenant-Colonel Dorofeev."