Do you ever question how often friendly fire accidents occur?

In any given conflict, statistics show there is up to a 20% casualty rate due to friendly fire. History reminds us of the infamous friendly fire death of Stonewall Jackson in the Civil War. The recent Iraq and Afghanistan conflicts reported significant casualties as a result of friendly fire.

Unfortunately, misjudgments and mistaken identities are a reality of war. 

And with advancements in Night Vision technology, conflicts in the dark are more and more likely to take place. 

The U.S. military prides itself on the ability to work under the cover of darkness. Night Vision goggles (NVG) are a standard piece of tactical gear to turn “darkness into day.”  The ability to see in the dark can be a huge tactical advantage over the enemy.

Yet with all the upsides of fighting in the dark with NVGs, soldiers are still vulnerable to the dangers of friendly fire.  

Why the IFF Glow Patch?


Without friend or foe protection soldiers in conflict are at a higher risk to be a victim of friendly fire.

The IFF glow patch is the soldier’s best friend on a dark battlefield. The patch attaches to gear or clothing and a Night Vision device detects and identifies a “friendly” position. 

As a result, the IFF glow patch protects the soldier against a mistaken identity.

An IFF patch is built in different sizes, shapes, colors, and designs. The critical concern is not so much the design but that soldiers do not engage in battle without one.

4 Covert IR Friend or Foe Patches Saving Lives

1. Glow tab 3/4″


The small 3/4″ IFF glow patch, also referred to as a “glow tab”, might be small but packs a lot of protection. 

Every issued US uniform is equipped with 2 IFF glow patches sewn onto each shoulder.  


IFF glow patch or 3/4" glow tab

2. IR reflective 2.5″ x 3″ 


The 2.5″ x 3″ IR reflective IFF patch is most popular among special units.

Available in nation flags, morale logos, call signs and custom designs.

This patch is printed with unit designs or laser cut to unit specifications. There are many colors and fabrics to choose from.

Night Vision View Custom IR Patch

3. Fusion IFF patch


This unique Fusion patch combines 2 covert IR films, Thermal and IR reflective onto one patch. This enables a Night Vision device and a Thermal imaging device to detect who’s in the zoo.

A non-covert film can also be built onto a Fusion patch.

4. Thermal patch 4″ x 4″


The 4″ x 4″ thermal patch provides 24/7 IFF detection. Using a thermal imager (FLIR), the thermal patch appears black with white hot settings, or white with black hot settings.

Unlike IR reflective patches, thermal film is detected in smoke, sand and fog.

Sold All Over the Globe

Since 2006, IR.Tools has provided IFF glow patch protection for soldiers all over the world.

We pride ourselves in our proprietary SandStorm Technology™ , a one layer IR film that resists water and debris from destroying the patch.

Contact us or call 443.292.8885 for a free quote.

If you are a motivated dealer we hope to partner with you to provide this extraordinary protection!

Application for dealers


 The Author

Tom Boyer profile picture

Since 2006, Tom has been the driving force behind IR.Tools, dedicated to delivering top-notch infrared solutions to the military, law enforcement, and sportsmen communities.

What began with a single infrared patch has blossomed into a comprehensive store featuring hundreds of IFF patches, vehicle IFF, an extensive suite of thermal training targets, and tools for drone pilots.

Beyond his innovative products, Tom is passionate about educating users on infrared technology and showcasing how advancements in IR can enhance their operations.

Tom holds an MS in Mechanical Engineering from the University of Maryland and an MBA from Regents University.

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