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, […]

It Starts Here

It Starts Here

Army educational outreach to build science, technology, engineering and math talent helps grow the workforce of tomorrow   By Mr. Jeffrey D. Singleton and Ms. Andrea Simmons-Worthen   The Army employs more than 800,000 military and civilian personnel, 96,000 of whom occupy science, technology, engineering or mathematic (STEM) positions, according to Defense Manpower Data Center classifications. Of that 96,000, more than 16,000 are world-class scientists and engineers within the Army’s 16 laboratories and research centers. These scientists and engineers develop leading-edge technologies and advanced capabilities that give our Soldiers, the Army’s greatest asset, the decisive advantage in the face of our adversaries and keep them safe from harm. Broadly defined […]

Knowledge of Power Is More Power

Knowledge of Power Is More Power

Assessments enable commanders to optimize energy, operational effectiveness   By Edric Thompson   When it comes to power and energy, Army research and development (R&D) continually seeks to develop solutions to increase performance, reduce consumption, increase efficiency and ensure power availability. However, the benefits of innovation cannot be leveraged to their fullest potential if the power grid is not set up properly, which may lead to redundancies, waste and safety issues. Unfortunately, in theater, this is the case more often than not. In August 2012, the U.S. Army Research, Development and Engineering Command (CERDEC) electrical engineers Noel Pleta and Jennifer Whitmore deployed to Afghanistan in support of Project Manager Mobile […]

Large scale radio technology demonstration at the Army’s Electronic Proving Ground

Large scale radio technology demonstration at the Army’s Electronic Proving Ground

By Ray K. Ragan   FORT HUACHUCA, Ariz. (Jan. 30, 2014) – The Army’s Electronic Proving Ground (EPG) recently conducted a large scale technology demonstration of a new radio waveform here. “We wanted to conduct a full scale, by that I mean an Army brigade’s worth, [demonstration] of radios exercising [and] characterizing the performance of the wideband networking waveform,” said, Joe Sweeney, test engineer for the Army’s Product Manager, Mid-Tier Networking Vehicular Radios (PdM MNVR). MNVR is a radio system that provides a robust, large-scale networking capability within a large unit, like an Army brigade, from the Soldier to the senior leaders. During the demonstration, a new radio waveform was […]