Leveraging technology to innovate RCAS training

Leveraging technology to innovate RCAS training

By Robert G. Medley and Rita G. Bartholomew Since its inception, Reserve Component Automation Systems (RCAS) has faced a number of training challenges. Soldier time constraints, weekend training in remote locations, and restricted instructor travel budgets forced the RCAS training team to develop new ways to deliver training to Reserve Component (RC) personnel. Our training team has met these challenges with one critical mission in mind: deliver quality training to thousands of RC users from both the Army National Guard (ARNG) and the U.S. Army Reserve (USAR) to enhance their day-to-day mobilization, safety, force management and personnel operations. Beginning in the 1990s, RCAS conducted on-site training for the RC Commands. […]

The Academic Angle

The Academic Angle

Leveraging students’ engineering expertise to bridge the gap between Soldier and system By Col. Michael E. Sloane, MAJ Toby Birdsell and Capt.(P) Tom Beyerl   Project Manager Soldier Sensors and Lasers (PM SSL) is in the business of developing the most advanced maneuver and targeting sensors ever fielded. A sometimes unwanted adjunct to advancement, however, is complexity, one of the greatest enemies of usability. Recognizing this critical relationship, the PM SSL team continuously seeks opportunities, in conjunction with the U.S. Army Maneuver and Fires Centers of Excellence, to connect with current and prospective warfighters through “touch points,” warfighter juries that enable the PM SSL team to tailor equipment designs to […]

Network Forensics makes an impact at the Army’s NIE

Network Forensics makes an impact at the Army’s NIE

A potent mix of software and methodologies borrowed from civilian industry makes a tremendous impact for the Army’s large-scale technology evaluation By Ray K. Ragan FORT BLISS, Texas – The Army’s semi-annual, large-scale Network Integration Evaluation (NIE) saw the technology of network forensics make an impact at NIE 14.2, the latest NIE, which concluded earlier this month. The U.S. Army Electronic Proving Ground (USAEPG) traditionally provides expertise in instrumentation for technology-based systems and is the Army’s designated tester for C4ISR systems, as part of the Army Test and Evaluation Command (ATEC). USAEPG supported the U.S. Army Operational Test Command, under ATEC, during this latest NIE. This year, in addition to […]

Evolving Innovation

Evolving Innovation

A new look at fostering cutting-edge thinking in Army science and technology   By Lt. Col. Joel Dillon, Dr. Jason Augustyn, Ms. Julia Kim and Mr. Dominic Ju   Science and technology (S&T) innovation is an uncertain road, with “failure” often a step on the path to a breakthrough. However, in a resource-constrained environment, planners must make the smartest possible investments of taxpayer money in S&T programs, balancing risk with the potential for transformational new capabilities. A good place to start striking this balance is at the “fuzzy front end” of innovation, the initial period of exploration preceding the development of new materiel solutions. For many years, the acquisition community […]

Research Resource

Research Resource

Rapid detection devices for pathogen vectors are case study in leveraging small business innovation funding   By Maj. Vanessa R. Melanson   When military forces arrive in a new operational area, military preventive medicine personnel—preventive medicine specialists, entomologists and environmental science engineers—assess the environment, identify health threats and propose mitigations. Vector-borne diseases are one of the primary readiness threats, and the arthropods (insects and arachnids) that transmit pathogens to people account for about 60 percent of the military’s priority pathogens list. Vector pathogen detection (VPD) provides military preventive medicine personnel the information necessary to implement specific vector-control measures and disease prevention countermeasures. VPD can minimize disease by sampling arthropods for […]

From Concept to Reality

From Concept to Reality

Pentagon demo shows leadership how the Integrated Air and Missile Defense system will revolutionize Army Air and Missile Defense   By Maj. Scott Gill and Mr. Dave Witteveen   The Integrated Air and Missile Defense Project Office (IAMD PO) and the Fires Center of Excellence held an “Immersion Day” at the Pentagon, March 18-19, to demonstrate the Army Integrated Air and Missile Defense (AIAMD) concept with the IAMD Battle Command System (IBCS). “AIAMD will fundamentally change the way Army Air and Missile Defense (AMD) forces organize, train, and fight, as we componentized sensors and shooters into an integrated network that provides unprecedented capability and flexibility to our commanders in the […]

Warfighters can soon use rugged, encrypted smartphone detectors to identify chemical and biological agent

Warfighters can soon use rugged, encrypted smartphone detectors to identify chemical and biological agent

By ECBC Communications   A warfighter is performing a mission in a dangerous area where civilians are showing signs of a possible chemical or biological agent exposure. Without the luxury of a full laboratory at his fingertips, it would be difficult for him to investigate the situation right then and there, prolonging any type of additional effort, possibly putting his life and the civilians’ lives in jeopardy. Thanks to the strong partnership between scientists and engineers at U.S. Army Edgewood Chemical Biological Center (ECBC), iSense, LLC., U.S. Army Communications-Electronics Research, Development and Engineering Center (CERDEC) and the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA), this dangerous scenario would not occur. ECBC, iSense, […]

‘Armed with Science’ pilot episode features defense breakthroughs

‘Armed with Science’ pilot episode features defense breakthroughs

By U.S. Army Research Laboratory public affairs   ADELPHI, Md. (March 10, 2014) — The Pentagon Channel’s pilot episode of Armed with Science is airing at 9 a.m., 1 p.m., and 5 p.m. (ET), today, and will delve into Army Research Laboratory and Naval Research Laboratory science that shapes the future of defense. The show takes viewers inside the minds of military scientists who improve national defense with infrared imaging, robotic satellite repair and novel weapons design during its debut. Defense producers from the Defense Media Activity conceptualized the program to shed light on the “seed corn of science and technology,” or basic and applied science. “‘Armed with Science’ tells […]

‘More’ is Better

‘More’ is Better

At warfighters’ request, Army delivers award-winning ration enhancement to help them in extreme conditions   By Mr. Joseph Zanchi and Ms. Alexandra Foran   Warfighters in extreme, demanding operational environments need additional sustenance to complete their missions successfully—they simply need MORE. In this case, MORE is the Modular Operational Ration Enhancement, developed by the Combat Feeding Directorate (CFD) at the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research Development and Engineering Center (NSRDEC) as a direct result of requests from warfighters deployed in Iraq and Afghanistan. “We received feedback from the field that some warfighters were losing weight and they needed extra calories,” said Julie Smith, a CFD senior food technologist. Smith, along […]

Soldiers say leadership critical in enhancing DCGS-A capabilities

Soldiers say leadership critical in enhancing DCGS-A capabilities

By David Vergun   WASHINGTON (Army News Service, Feb. 24, 2014) — Soldiers who have used the Distributed Common Ground System-Army, both on and off the battlefield, say that with adequate training, it’s an intelligence game changer. Sgt. Troy Thatcher is one such user and proponent. While deployed with the 101st Airborne Division in Afghanistan, he was a junior analyst on a tactical intelligence ground collection team. He described how DCGS-A helped make his unit’s mission a success. Thatcher, then a specialist, went on daily patrols with the infantry, where he gathered intelligence. He then uploaded that data into DCGS-A, a system he said he used effectively. At the time, […]