Camouflage Wiki
Army Combat Uniform

(Universal Camouflage Patern) Army Combat Uniform

The Universal Camouflage Pattern (UCP) is a three-color digital camouflage pattern which blends tan, gray and green (Desert Sand 500, Urban Gray 501 and Foliage Green 502) to work equally in desert, woodland, and urban environments. It was introduced by the US Army with the fielding of a new Army Combat Uniform (ACU) in 2005.

Similar to the United States Marine Corps MARPAT and Canadian CADPAT camouflage schemes that preceded it, the pattern design is based on research into Dual Texture (Dual-Tex) Camouflage conducted in the 1970s.

Black was omitted from the pattern since it is highly visible both to the naked eye and to modern optics. However, it does utilize several shades of grey ranging from very light to extremely dark. Pure black, when viewed through night vision devices, appears excessively dark and creates an undesirable high-contrast image.


UCP was determined to be ineffective in practice and may have been implemented due to budgetary constraints. It was replaced beginning in 2010, when troops deploying to Afghanistan were issued ACUs using the MultiCam pattern. That limited issue was in turn followed by the Army-wide issuance of ACUs in the similar Operational Camouflage Pattern (OCP) in 2015.