Speeding combat casualty care

Speeding combat casualty care

In future conflicts, with communication channels and evacuation routes contested, a lot more casualty care might happen right there on the battlefield itself. by Mr. Ramin A. Khalili Dr. Elliot Botvinick sits in his office on the campus of the University of California, Irvine, holding a tiny device in the palm of his hand. It is smaller than a garage door opener, smaller than a standard business card even, and is so slight and inconspicuous that he might be able to stick one on a passing student without their noticing. It also might be the future of battlefield medicine, according to the U.S. Army. Minds like Botvinick’s may be exactly […]

How many robots does it take?

How many robots does it take?

THEN & NOW 2007 & 2018 Then: a veritable ‘petting zoo’ of 7,000 unique robots, each slightly different to operate and expensive to maintain. Now: the challenge of getting all the functions of those 7,000 on just three main robotic platforms. by Ms. Mary Kate Aylward  It’s an arresting image: A dog—well, a “dog”—loose in the Sonoran Desert moves through a group of empty cars and trucks, sniffing around before halting and signaling to its handlers. Army personnel arrive on scene to dismantle the bomb identified by the “dog,” which is in fact a robot equipped with a powerful sensor that detects vapors or particles emanating from explosive devices. It […]

Army scouts latest drone technology at SOCOM ThunderDrone event

Army scouts latest drone technology at SOCOM ThunderDrone event

YBOR CITY, Fla. (November 6, 2017) — Enter the unassuming brick building in historic Ybor City, Fl. and there’s the buzz of drones in the air and sound of robots on the ground. There’s an autonomous drone that launches from a moving truck or boat to support a convoy on the move, then tracks the vehicle while orbiting around and monitoring nearby threats. There’s a pistol-packing robot that can sneak into buildings, climb stairs, send 360-degree views of the site and then lock on a target and shoot. And there are drones that work together in a swarm to relay information and then autonomously reconfigure their position to reestablish communications […]

Technically Speaking: Language less foreign

Technically Speaking: Language less foreign

A downloadable, Army-specific translation app made possible by machine learning enables individual Soldiers to communicate anywhere, with or without internet access or local translators. by Mr. Michael Doney, Dr. Christina Bates and Mr. Tracy Blocker Today’s more expeditionary Army needs interpreters and linguists, but they are expensive to train and always in short supply. In another case of science fiction becoming science fact, the Army has created a partial solution to the language barrier: the Machine Foreign Language Translation System (MFLTS). Right now, MFLTS consists of two apps, one for real-time, two-way, speech-to-speech translation and one for text-to-text translation of electronic documents, webpages and social media. Each application has two […]

The king of battle gets stronger

The king of battle gets stronger

PEO Ammunition adapts new technology to produce improved, more lethal ammunition for 155 mm artillery. by Mr. Peter Burke and Ms. Tara Sarruda Since the 1970s, ammunition improvements for 155 mm artillery systems have resulted in U.S. dominance of long-range artillery weapon systems. But with continuous change in threats worldwide, the rapid introduction of new technology and our adversaries’ adaptations, the U.S. faces new challenges. Defeating large formations of enemy armored vehicles will require new ammunition with improved lethality for 155 mm artillery while minimizing its negative effects on friendly troops and noncombatants. To ensure that 155 mm field artillery keeps pace, the Program Executive Office (PEO) for Ammunition is […]

On the front lines against PTSD

On the front lines against PTSD

USAMRMC leads the way in research to prevent, diagnose and treat service members’ psychological injuries. by Col. Dennis McGurk, Lt. Cmdr. Christopher Steele, Capt. Leonard D. Skipper, Dr. Ronda Renosky and Dr. Ronald L. Hoover Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) has been called one of the “signature wounds” of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. The U.S. Army Medical Research and Materiel Command (USAMRMC) has been at the forefront of documenting the prevalence and impact of PTSD on Soldiers and the joint warfighter, and developing interventions to prevent or address it. USAMRMC is the Army’s medical materiel developer, with responsibility for research, development and acquisition and medical logistics management. In 2004, […]

The Power of Prototypes

The Power of Prototypes

One year on, the Army Rapid Capabilities Office is breaking the ‘one-size-fits-all’ acquisition approach to combating rising threats. by Lt. Col. Marcos A. Cervantes Last August, senior Army leaders unveiled a new secret weapon. But it wasn’t a missile or a radar or a tank. It was the Army Rapid Capabilities Office (RCO), a new organization designed to cut through the bureaucracy and rapidly deploy technologies to combatant commanders in order to address high-priority strategic threats. The office’s mandate, said Gen. Mark A. Milley, the Army chief of staff, was “to ensure that we’re pursing the right capabilities for our Army today and tomorrow, and to do it very quickly, […]

Champion for technology

Champion for technology

Maj. Gen. Cedric T. Wins, RDECOM commanding general, answers questions about how RDECOM solves problems that Soldiers face today, as well as what the Army will face in the future. by Ms. Argie Sarantinos-Perrin For Maj. Gen. Cedric T. Wins, readiness is a moving target. The necessity for readiness today is simply a given, but then there’s tomorrow and the host of tomorrows to come. “We need to strike the right balance between near-term and far-term technology so that we can stay ahead of our adversaries. Our goal is to figure out how to capture breakthrough technology and harness its potential so that we keep the technology pipeline full,” Wins […]

Commanders plan; autonomy facilitates

Commanders plan; autonomy facilitates

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. — “Receipt of Mission” — so begins the Army’s extensive Military Decision Making Process, or MDMP, followed by six more steps, 44 tasks and hundreds of sub-tasks. This proven methodology assists commanders and staff with applying their critical thinking skills to formulate sound decisions, but it can be complex and time consuming. To streamline the process, Army science and technology engineers are inserting autonomous technologies into the MDMP, with the caveat that “autonomy” will never substitute for the human commander’s intent. The Automated Planning Framework, or APF, is an autonomous capability under development at the U.S. Army Materiel Command’s Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center. It […]

A test of medical readiness

A test of medical readiness

U.S. military efforts in biological warfare defense readiness prove themselves with Ebola response. by Dr. George W. Christopher, Lt. Col., USAF, MC (Ret) The 2014-2016 outbreak of Ebola virus disease triggered an unprecedented public health disaster. For the first time since its discovery in 1976, Ebola struck large, crowded and mobile urban populations. It was the largest Ebola outbreak in both numbers of cases and geographic distribution, with more than 28,000 cases, 11,000 deaths, and 10 times the number of all previous Ebola outbreaks combined. The virus spread rapidly through Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone, striking Mali, Nigeria, Senegal, Spain, the United Kingdom and the United States as well. In […]