U.S. Congress has approved full funding for the prelaunch processes to continue on the tri-agency Deep Space Climate Observatory (DSCOVR) satellite system, developed to help monitor for potentially disastrous sun storms. The funding ensures systems are a go for a January space launch. It is set to blast off from Cape Canaveral, Florida, aboard the SpaceX Falcon 9, built by the private space technology company founded by Elon Musk.
NASA has awarded its long-awaited Commercial Crew Development contracts to Boeing and SpaceX to build the next generation of spacecraft that will deliver astronauts to the International Space Station beginning in 2017. The two firms will build, deliver and launch space capsules of their own design to provide human access to low Earth orbit. Currently, U.S. astronauts can reach the space station only by purchasing seats aboard Russian Soyuz spacecraft for $70 million each.
The total potential contract value will be $6.8 billion for spacecraft certification over the life of the contracts, according to Charlie Bolden, NASA administrator. Boeing will receive $4.2 billion, and SpaceX will receive $2.6 billion.
When cloud computing revolutionized the way businesses stored, processed and transmitted data, the rapid transformation—as with a lot of technological advances—left U.S. government agencies behind the times. The government’s hurried effort to align itself with the paradigm shift from traditional stand-alone computers, workstations and networks to the not-quite-understood cloud computing technology left a policy aperture fraught with challenges that caught some agencies unprepared—particularly adjuncts in inspector general and general counsel offices.
Explosive amounts of data and the strains on limited financial resources have prompted corporations and governmental agencies alike to explore joint tenancy in the cloud for storing, processing and transmitting data. But while good fences—or in this case isolation mechanisms—make good neighbors, in the virtual world of cloud security the idiom might not ring entirely true. In the public cloud arena, risks arise when organizations place their data in a cloud system but cannot control who their neighbors might be.
Despite the various associated national security and economic issues emerging worldwide, this can be a time of opportunity. Major challenges often compel bold steps and creative thought, which is why opportunity defines our future. The key is to identify and focus on shaping the appropriate future opportunities. For AFCEA, opportunities abound! AFCEA remains totally dedicated to increasing knowledge through the exploration of issues relevant to its members in information technology, communications and electronics for the defense, homeland security and intelligence communities.
U.K. government entities at various levels are looking into bring-your-own-device policies for their purposes. And while their mandates differ, they all have one factor in common—a need for the right level of security. To help groups at the most open classification levels make the right choices, a U.K. security agency has released a series of guidance documents that outlines what decision makers should consider.
Every day, 22 veterans commit suicide—a startling number prompting experts to probe for methods to curb the national epidemic. Officials are fielding a new program, funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which can help experts assess the psychological state of troops and veterans early on and possibly get them the help needed before it’s too late.
Officials across the U.S. Defense Department are pushing to identify and develop the disruptive technologies that will offer orders-of-magnitude advantages on the battlefield. But while bringing such capabilities to fruition is difficult, even determining what qualifies as disruptive represents a challenge. As personnel wrestle with definitions, they are forging ahead with their creative ideas.
Painful recollections of the tragic deaths of the 19 firemen who perished last year battling a forest fire in Yarnell, Arizona, remained all too vivid in the memory of Prescott, Arizona, Fire Division Chief Don Devendorf as he observed a few weeks ago how technology developed for the U.S. military might help in saving the lives of firefighters battling wildfires. If the new technology can save even one life, he says, he’s all in favor of it.
Scientists from the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine might have discovered a way to get bodies to regrow muscle following traumatic injuries.
The research, funded with about $4 million over a five-year period from the Defense Department, targets patients who have large, or volumetric, muscle loss; results of injuries where so much muscle tissue is lost the body is unable to regenerate the tissue.
Two years ago, a team of surgeons, scientists, radiologists and physical therapists began conducting the first human of trials to implant scaffolding material into severe wounds to trigger their bodies to regrow muscle.
One man’s trash really can be another man’s treasure. Professors at the University of Arizona (UA) recently transformed sulfur waste from refining fossil fuels into moldable, infrared-capable plastic lenses—an incredibly inexpensive and lightweight component that can be used for night-vision goggles among other uses.
The discovery could have huge positive implications for the U.S. military, which has already expressed interest in the patent-pending polymer, Robert A. Norwood, professor of optical sciences at UA, says.
The global market for cloud-based architecture and related services and applications is expected to surge through 2017, analysts say. Demand for a variety of virtualized “as a service” capabilities such as infrastructure, software and security also will increase.
Worldwide spending on cloud-related technologies and services will be in the range of $174.2 billion in 2014, a 20 percent increase from the $145.2 billion spent in 2013, states a recent report by IHS Technology. According to IHS, by 2017 the cloud market will be worth $235.1 billion, triple the market’s $78.2 billion in 2011.
A new effort to connect entrepreneurs with national security agencies that need their ideas has taken hold as a public-private partnership in Arlington, Virginia. Tandem NSI hopes to accelerate innovation in the national security sphere through the work.
Lowest price technically acceptable (LPTA) procurement might not give government the best solutions, and it definitely causes consternation for industry, but it is here to stay at least for a while. A survey released this week reveals deep concerns about the LPTA business deals and why current fiscal demands will keep them around.
The latest advancement in graphene research shows promise for improving electronics and biological or chemical sensors by pushing or pulling liquid droplets across the surface. By placing long chemical gradients onto the graphene, scientists can control the substances’ flow. Through this capability, scientists can create larger puddles, making it easier to detect dangers such as nerve agents or bacteria in water.
The U.S. Naval Education and Training Command (NETC) is in the first stages of a five-stage plan to virtualize its computers at facilities across the globe in an attempt to save resources. Though the program itself has no direct connection to the recent sequester cuts that went into effect earlier this month, such projects could present possible cost-saving options to budget-constrained organizations.
|NASA’s new TDRS-K communications satellite, built by Boeing, features new electronics and better power management to serve future space missions.|
The TDRS constellation adds to its lifetime, but NASA planners already are looking at revolutionary technologies for the subsequent generation of orbiters.
Big data can mean big problems for the people trying to derive usable information from a large number of sources. Since coming into existence in March, the Scalable Data Management, Analysis and Visualization Institute has made strides to resolve this issue for programs running on supercomputers. The young organization’s efforts have applicability to a variety of scientific fields—including nuclear physics—and its tools are open source so others can take advantage of the findings.
NATO recently consolidated three support and acquisition agencies into one to create effectiveness, improve efficiencies and increase savings. The organization will continue to evolve as the NATO mission transforms, including changes expected following the withdrawal from the war zone in Afghanistan.