Optical Camouflage is a form of active camouflage.
Description & Characteristics
The Optical Camouflage uses a holographic projection system that creates an illusionary image of its surroundings to avoid visual detection, a form of invisibility. The camouflage isn't a true invisibility cloak, rather, an advanced grid projection system to blend in its surroundings like a chameleon. The system was developed by Celestial Being and was installed into several of their Gundams, ships, resource satellites for infiltration and stealth purposes; however, the abilities of the camouflage differ between applications.
When performing missions that need a Gundam to be hidden, the optical camouflage blends the unit into its surroundings, however, the camouflage isn't perfect. The camouflage isn't an active cloaking field; it's only applicable when the unit is completely stationary. Should the unit move during cloak, the optical camouflage would unveil the unit to the naked eye, however, it may still avoid sensor detection. The optical camouflage is also capable of expanding its camouflage field. It's able to cloak another Gundam inches away from its position, but it's unclear if it is capable of cloaking a non-Gundam MS and/or foreign object within its domain.
When it comes to CB's ships, the system is only meant to avoid visual detection from visual sensors and observation satellites at far distances; not from close range. Upon close range observation, the camouflage is obvious to the naked eye as the holographic grid creates overlapping image folds at the edge of the camouflage. Even if a ship is completely stationary for absolute invisbility, it is still able to reveal itself should any particle weapons fire through the cloak.
For resource satellites, lessons learned between AD 2307-2312 convinced CB engineers to create a massive camouflage system to cloak large pockets of space. To prevent visual detection, the entire satellite is cloaked and its field is expanded by unmeasured distances. Because the satellite is stationary, there are no over-lapping after-images. However, ships and floating debris moving in and out of the field can temporarily reveal the edge of the camouflage field. Overall, its technology played a crucial role in protecting the secrecy of CB and affected MS warfare for generations.
Notes & Trivia
Articles & References