British researchers and engineers have developed a new technology for infrared (heat measuring) sensors that quadruples the number of pixels obtained. This nearly doubles the effective range of infrared sensors. The new tech, called SuperHawk is likened to the difference seen between the old PAL/NTSC TV picture quality compared to the much sharper images of HD. Thus replacing the sensor and some electronics in most infrared sensors increases their effective range by about 85 percent.
Advances like this have characterized military technology since the 1980s and not only has this “cheaper, better, smaller” trend continued but is has accelerated. This pleases military users but drives military planners and commanders nuts because some of these advances (like GPS and small, reliable UAVs) change things radically in a short time. There is going to be more of that, so brace yourselves.