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advanced tactical concealment system
It has been a whIle sInce there has been a revolutIonary new InnovatIon In fabrIcs, desIgn, or camouflage pattern and the raIder team have been watchIng the rollout of the new a-tacs (advanced tactIcal concealment system) very closely Indeed; those of you that know us wIll be able to pIcture the scenes In the raIder offIce and ImagIne the heated debate that has gone on over thIs!
A-TACS has been developed by Digital Concealment Systems, (DCS) in the USA to answer the call for a more effective camouflage pattern and complementary system of clothing, footwear and equipment for operators, the general military and law enforcement personnel. A-TACS is designed as a universal pattern for a wide range of operational environments; currently the range focuses on the “arid” pattern but we understand from Phil Duke of DCS that additional supporting colours and designs will be forthcoming. As you, and we, are all too aware many of the modern digital camouflage patterns currently in use by the tactical community are flawed. Square pixels used to create the camouflage distortion effect do not replicate the shapes, forms and shadows of the environment they are used in especially when viewed through optics; this is what we often refer to as the “I See You” unification effect. The “visual noise” in these same patterns tends to make them close up into a solid colour, producing a unified effect when viewed from a distance. A-TACS addresses and improves these critical issues in three ways. 1: Unnatural square pixels are replaced with organic pixels. DCS’ patented process creates a palette of natural colors digitally sampled from real-world elements in carefully controlled lighting. This complex pattern is then recreated using an algorithm that “writes” organically shaped pixels using the specific colour information given. The end result is still digitally produced, but much more “natural”. 2: ATACS uses small patterns to create larger more distinct shapes designed to work at a distance. Small shapes create larger shapes and larger shapes are organized into a distinct pattern with no horizontal or vertical orientation. This unique “pattern within a pattern” concept allows A-TACS to effectively break the human outline at great distances thereby minimizing the unifying effect. 3: More effective use of the colour range produces a better concealment system. A-TACS is created using a far greater range of inter-mingled natural colours than was previously possible. The overall base colour for this is a neutral tan which is designed for use in open, rocky or arid environments.

Taking iT inTo The Field
That’s the clever “science bit” behind the birth of a new camouflage pattern, but how is this going to roll out into a range of products that can be effectively fielded as a complete clothing/equipment/weapons combination? Basically DCS have worked with a number of first rate manufacturers to bring this to market in a viable form. Those manufacturers will be well known to the majority of Raider readers as we have covered many of them in some detail in prior issues. The manufacturing partners include: Propper International: Propper have just released their first batch of clothing in A-TACS pattern based on the ACU cut; however they also released totally new TAC-U designs of both trouser and combat shirt at the SHOT Show 2011. www.propper.com EOTAC: EOTAC are obviously planning a very large release of A-TACS garments; although they are not currently showing on the EOTAC website a search will reveal “coming soon” for many of their most popular clothing designs. www.eotac.com

Tactical Assault Gear (TAG): TAG’s website will show their commitment to the A-TACS rollout with a full range of their top pieces available in the pattern. Plate carriers, rigs, pouches, and vests are all available. www.tacticalassaultgearstore.com Blue Force Gear: BFG already have their excellent Vickers combat sling and a great new pack modeled on their Denied Area pattern in available and in stock! www.blueforcegear.com Danner: Highly respected amongst professionals for their Acadia series boots, Danner have already released their TFX boot in full A-TACS including the pattern in their multi-directional outsoles! Both Gore Tex lined and unlined versions are available. www.danner.com DPMS/Panther Arms: DPMS have already released a model of their 16 inch barrel “Oracle” rifle with A-TACS furniture. www.dpmsinc.com Remington: Remington’s website will show a number of weapons being made available in A-TACS including the venerable Model 870 shotgun. www.remington.com

Bushmaster: Another highly reputed firearms manufacturer also working with a 16 inch barrel M4 type platform with A-TACS furniture; their website also reveals new versions of the 20 and 24 inch barrel “Predator” and “Varminter” available in the pattern. www.bushmaster.com Bushnell: Optics thus far are covered within the excellent range of rifle scopes from Bushnell, with a number of their most popular Tactical Elite models available in A-TACS. Recently released also are two Laser Rangefinders, the Elite 1200 and 1500 both in the pattern. www.bushnell.com Emerson: To look after the edged weapon area DCS have linked up with Emerson knives who are pretty legendary. Emerson offers a range of their models available in A-TACS. www.emersonknives.com Safariland: A recent addition to the A-TACS “family” is the well known and respected Safariland with their excellent range of holsters and PROTECH branded armour solutions; A-TACS will be available as a colour option for all of PROTECH’s

tactical carriers and soft tactical armor accessories such as yokes, throats, collars, biceps, groin protectors and pouches. www.protechtactical.com www.safariland.com Basically DCS have the full range of equipment from the ground up and the head down now covered by a prestigious panel of manufacturing partners, and it is likely that more will follow as the products themselves are fully launched onto the market.

Where nexT?
With Safariland joining the other manufacturers in offering A-TACS products which are launching worldwide as we write, DCS has an introductory offering which include new designs and solutions representing one of the very first full head-to-toe concealment systems to tactical professionals globally. It has been a pleasure for us at Raider to communicate frequently and closely with DCS, especially Phil Duke, as the buzz about A-TACS has turned in to a mighty roar; we’ve dealt with many tactical gear companies over the years and Phil has to be one of the nicest guys we have ever dealt with. We can fully understand how his openness, enthusiasm and “can do” approach has already driven A-TACS so far and so fast! This is new equipment that is definitely “on the burn” right now and we would advise that you keep your eyes firmly on it; we certainly will be! If you want something innovative then DCS have it, and their manufacturing partners are ready to supply it.