We’ve seen all sorts of weapons mounted on drones, and military drones already wield impressive firepower, but that doesn’t mean we’re done building crazy machines with fire power. The next step is adding heavy machine guns and even grenade launchers to robots. Thankfully, these are not robots powered by artificial intelligence. Just like drones, they’re piloted by soldiers — the robots only do the heavy lifting and stabilize fire.
Earlier this month, the U.S. military accidentally dropped a few Humvees hundreds of feet through the air, at which point they prompted crashed into the ground. If your first thought was, “That sounds both incredibly terrifying and endlessly watchable,” you’re in luck — it was all caught on video.
The military may have a potent new weapon in its arsenal, but it doesn’t involve state-of-the-art hardware or phenomenal firepower. The U.S. Army has successfully used a desktop computer to determine what target image a soldier was thinking about.
The experiment took place at an Army research facility known as “The MIND Lab” located within Aberdeen Proving Ground, Md. Cognitive neuroscientist Anthony Ries decoded a soldier’s brain signals by hooking him up to an electroencephalogram – a device that reads brain waves. More →
The U.S. Army is testing remote controlled weapons systems for base perimeter security.
The tests at Fort Bliss, Texas, involve unmanned, weaponized towers, which aim to make more effective use of military personnel. Using the remote controlled systems, two soldiers inside the base camp tactical operation center can do the security work once done by 10, explained Lt. Col. Raphael Heflin, commander, 142nd Combat Service Support Battalion (CSSB), 1st Armored Division, in a press release. “Every Soldier I have assigned to securing the perimeter is one I don’t have that can execute support missions,” he said. More →
A new radio technology lets warfighters talk to each other by harnessing their bones to transmit and listen to messages.
The technology leverages the human body’s natural ability to transmit sound through bone. It takes the bone-transmitted messages and then delivers them directly to the inner ear through the warfighter’s helmet.
Warfighters can both listen to messages and send messages this way – and the tech is the mere weight and size of a small coin. More →
The F-35 fighter is one expensive military project, but the stealth plane should become a primary weapon for the U.S. and its allies soon. Sure, some recent reports suggested the sophisticated fighter might not be able to beat the plane it’s replacing in a fight. But hey, it’s still fun to watch an official video that shows us one of the F-35’s weapons being tested for the first time. More →
While drones becomes more prevalent, U.S. Army engineers are testing technology that can be used to blast potentially hostile unmanned aerial systems (UAVs) out of the sky. The Extended Area Protection and Survivability Integrated Demonstration program (EAPS ID) at Picatinny Arsenal in New Jersey has been developing a gun-based solution to defend against C-RAM (counter rockets, artillery, and mortars) technology, according to a U.S. Army press release. More →
The U.S. Army’s new camouflage pattern uniforms hit stores Wednesday.
The Operational Camouflage Pattern uniform is available in select military clothing stores. In a statement released last month, the Army said that the new clothing is the result of the most comprehensive uniform camouflage testing effort it has ever undertaken. More →
The Army spent more than $1 trillion on the F-35 airplane program, a next-gen fighter that should outclass the F-16 in every way. The stealthy new flagship plane will be used by the U.S. Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps, as well as the militaries of more than a dozen U.S. allies in the future, replacing the F-16. But don’t expect it to perform better than the F-16 that the U.S. Air Force first acquired in the late 1970s, even though it should be superior to the F-16 in every conceivable way. More →
The U.S. Army and Air Force are harnessing laser technology for bomb disposal in an ambitious project to minimize the risks posed by explosive devices to military personnel. More →
“Star Wars”-style hoverbikes could become part of America’s high-tech arsenal, as the U.S. Army Research Laboratory looks to harness the unusual technology for military use. More →
The U.S. Army has started a pilot program on June 6th to test the effectiveness of equipping troops with tablets and phones in combat, CNN recently reported. The idea is to provide troops with the ability to send text messages and geotagged images that alert others about their current surroundings. Similarly, the infantry could use the devices to file regular reports and easily view maps, CNN said. So far, the troops have been testing the iPhone and phones powered by Windows Phone and Android, and soldiers have particularly liked the iPhone and Android-powered devices. In addition to smartphones, the Army is also testing the iPad and tablets from Dell and HP. The results of the tests have been so positive that the Army could begin deploying a small amount of troops equipped with smartphones later this year. “Today, we don’t have the level of encryption that we would need to take [a smartphone] overseas and fully integrate it into our mission-command systems,” said Ed Mazzanti, an Army director working on the program. “There could be some limited deployments even this year, tied to tactical radios that supply the encryption that’s needed.” More →
In an effort to help assist deployed servicemen and women in the United States Military, Google is allowing anyone with a .mil email address to sign up for a Google Voice invite and get pretty much instantaneous access. Google’s reasoning behind this (a pretty good one, though you couldn’t buy PR this good) is that when deployed, it’s incredibly difficult to stay in touch with family and loves ones. Timezone differences, different schedules, and everything else make it hard to communicate and Google’s looking to help change that. Here’s a quote from the Google post:
“For servicemen and women who are constantly on the move, having a single number and an easy way to retrieve messages from loved ones can be invaluable. To help our service members communicate with their loved ones and show our support to those serving our country, Google is launching a new program. Starting today, any active U.S. service member with a .mil email address can sign up for a Google Voice account at http://www.google.com/militaryinvite and start using the free service within a day.”