Handheld mobile devices will be the next delivery vehicles for geospatial intelligence if the agency responsible for processing and delivering the vital information has its way. The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency already has developed apps for a variety of different mobile platforms, and it is working with the commercial sector to expand the menu it is about to offer to individual users in the field.
In the battle to share information effectively among local, state and federal partners, the National Guard Bureau has employed a tool designed to give personnel an edge. This geospatial information technology is deployed across the United States and its territories, enabling better coordination during emergency situations. With Google Earth as its base, it already has proved valuable in large-scale responses, and officials are planning future improvements.
A solar cell no bigger than the dot over the letter “i” is setting new standards for efficiency and could significantly reduce the cost of solar-provided power in hot, dry regions, making solar energy more competitive with established, conventional sources of electricity, according to experts.
China’s navy has begun using unmanned aerial vehicles as part of its blue-water operations. At least one type has been photographed by foreign reconnaissance aircraft, and other variants have been reported. Not only has China been displaying an assortment of models at air shows, it also is incorporating advanced U.S. unmanned vehicle technology into current and future systems.
Significant changes lie ahead for U.S. Army forces as communicators move into the next era of battlespace communications. Smartphone technology is opening the door for individual networking devices for which signaleers already are laying the groundwork. And, the promise of cloud computing would enable large amounts of data to be moved among the battlefield without mobile databases.
Command and control is undergoing an evolution spawned by the information technology revolution. These changes may be both desired and immutable, as no military commander can either neglect new capabilities or turn back the technological clock when it comes to managing forces in the battlespace.
All computer systems are prone to attacks from various cyberthreats, but disruptions on few of those networks have the potential to cause calamitous damage to national infrastructures.To help prevent catastrophe, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security has an effort dedicated to countering these dangers through various partnerships and training opportunities.
U.S. Marines are tasked with battling enemies in any environment or domain and increasingly that location is cyberspace. Information assurance officials around the Corps are striving to ensure the reliability and trustworthiness of the service’s systems, and though they are aware of the potential for attack from the outside, misuse from the inside is a more prevalent concern.
U.S. Marine commanders soon will have a new mobile command and control capability that will be readily transferable from vehicle to vehicle without mounting or installation modifications. This new system is being created primarily from cost-effective, off-the-shelf digital communications equipment.
Personnel from the U.S. Army’s 780th Military Intelligence Brigade--the service's first-ever cyber brigade--already are assisting in securing the U.S. Defense Department's networks against cyber attacks, although the brigade will not be fully operational until fiscal year 2015.