Technology

November 13, 2019
By Kimberly Underwood
Gen. Mike Holmes, USAF, commander of Air Combat Command (r), receives a brief on U-2 Dragon Lady ejection procedures from Lt. Col. Charles, 9th Operations Group deputy commander, at Beale Air Force Base, California. Holmes visited the 9th Reconnaissance Wing, where he was immersed in all aspects of the reconnaissance mission. U.S Air Force photo by Senior Airman Tristan D. Viglianco

The necessity of multidomain operations to combat near-peer adversaries in the future dictates that the U.S. military fight together seamlessly across the air, land, sea, space and cyber environments. The services must be able to generate offensive and defensive effects from all of these domains, with systems in one environment supporting operations in another domain, said Gen. Mike Holmes, USAF, commander, Air Combat Command, speaking Tuesday at AFCEA International and IEEE’s MILCOM conference in Norfolk, Virginia.

November 13, 2019
Posted by Julianne Simpson
Credit: Shutterstock/whiteMocca

The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) has awarded $159,040 to Learning Machine Technologies Inc. to develop blockchain security technology to prevent credential fraud.

November 1, 2019
By Kimberly Underwood
U.S. Air Force A-10 Thunderbolt II jets fire flares while breaking away after aerial refueling from a KC-135 Stratotanker of the 340th Expeditionary Aerial Refueling Squadron out of Kandahar Airfield, Afghanistan, in August. In multidomain operations in the future, the Air Force will need a highly connected web of sensors across the air, land, sea and space.  U.S. Air Force photo by Staff Sgt. Keifer Bowes

As the U.S. Air Force is working to define operations on the battlefield of the future, sensors or other digitally connected devices will play a key role—as they always have—but on a much larger scale, one expert says. For the military, the world of Internet of Things, or IoT, has to work across the air, land, space and sea domains. And for the Air Force to enable a greater sensor-based environment, it has to tackle data platforms, cloud storage and capabilities, communication infrastructure and its network, says Lauren Knausenberger, the Air Force’s chief transformation officer.

November 1, 2019
By George Seffers
DARPA’s Ocean of Things program may be the largest effort for deploying sensors in the ocean, but others are interested in gathering oceanic data.  Willyam Bradberry/Shutterstock

The U.S. Defense Department could one day place thousands of low-cost, floating sensors into the ocean to collect environmental data, such as water temperature, as well as activity data about commercial vessels, aircraft and even fish or maritime mammals moving through the area. But others also are dropping similar sensors in the world’s oceans, and defense researchers suggest many of those systems could be integrated into an even more comprehensive ocean-based Internet of Things.

November 1, 2019
By Robert K. Ackerman
Green Beret forces train for multidomain operations in a joint exercise with the U.S. Air Force. Adapting technologies and capabilities from the Internet of Things (IoT) may hold the key toward achieving vital capabilities for Army multidomain warfighters.  U.S. Army

The U.S. Army is looking toward the Internet of Things to reshape the future force for multidomain operations. Faced with the challenge of networking vast amounts of diverse sensors, the service views this type of networking as the solution to greater efficiency combined with increased capability.

Bruce D. Jette, assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition, logistics and technology, emphasizes the importance of the Internet of Things (IoT) approach across the service. “The IoT has the potential to greatly improve and economize the way we will operate as an Army in the future,” he declares.

November 1, 2019
By Matt Dumiak
Protected data includes any information that can directly or indirectly identify an individual, such as name, driver’s license information, address, passport number, Social Security number and email address.

The California Consumer Privacy Act gives the state’s residents the ability to see and control the personal data companies have, share and sell. The privacy act started as a ballot initiative in early 2018 and was signed into law just a few months later in June. After first-round amendments were approved, the effective date was set as January 1, 2020, with an enforcement of July 1, 2020.

October 21, 2019
Posted by George I. Seffers
Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories search for ways to protect satellites from a variety of threats, including missiles, lasers and electronic warfare. Credit: Shutterstock/Andrey Armyagov

Researchers at Sandia National Laboratories launched a seven-year mission campaign this month to develop the science, technology and architecture needed for autonomous satellite protection systems.

October 18, 2019
By Robert K. Ackerman
This early version of the ARL RCTA's LLAMA robot demonstrated how a quadruped can ascertain obstacles and avoid them. An improved version features better sensors, and future iterations will give it more speed and greater payload.

Autonomous vehicles that can clear debris from roads, move containers after determining their contents and scuttle across rough terrain amid changing environments have emerged as the Army Research Laboratory (ARL) marked 10 years of collaborative research with industry and academia. The goals reached in the capstone of the Robotics Collaborative Technology Alliance (RCTA) were presented at the Carnegie Mellon University National Robotics Engineering Center (NREC) in Pittsburgh, as the ARL demonstrated several robots designed around Army battlefield needs.

October 17, 2019
By George I. Seffers
Soldiers travel in an M113 armored personnel carrier during a combat support training exercise. The Army keeps purchases and stores for long periods components of major systems, such as transmissions for M113s, but advances in manufacturing could help the service, and the industrial base, find new ways of sustaining heavy equipment. Credit: Master Sgt. Michel Sauret

Advanced manufacturing techniques could inject innovation into the defense industry, suggested Bruce Jette, assistant secretary of the Army for acquisition, logistics and technology.

“We have a problem with the industrial base, particularly for the defense industry,” Jette told the audience at the Association of the United States Army annual conference in Washington, D.C. He added that the industrial base still conjures images of “large, smoking cauldrons of steel” because “that’s what we drove them to.”

Jette further noted that the industrial base “has some gaps in it because we haven’t been producing large equipment systems in a long time.”

June 12, 2018
By Robert K. Ackerman
Tom Miller (c), CEO of ClearForce, stands with the judges who declared his firm’s technology the winner in the second AFCEA Small Business Innovation Showcase Competition. Flanking Tom are (l-r) Glenn Hernandez, CISO, OpEdge Solutions LLC; Manoj Bhatia, president, Network Runners Inc.; Maria Horton, CEO of EmeSec; and Bill Jones, senior vice president of DSA’s Integrated Solutions Group. Photo credit: Elizabeth Moon

A small business with a prestigious board of directors is the second firm selected in an AFCEA Small Business Innovation Showcase competition June 7 to uncover innovative emerging technologies. The company, ClearForce of Vienna, Virginia, won against three other firms with its proprietary technology for seeking out employees who might be motivated to commit insider crimes deliberately as well as accidentally.

July 29, 2019
By Robert K. Ackerman
Judges and competitors gathering after the latest AFCEA innovation shark tank are (l-r) Robert Osborne, CTO of IMPRES Technology Solutions; judge Glenn Hernandez, national director of U.S. Cyber Challenge; judge Col. Laurie Moe Buckshot, USA (Ret.), president and CEO of Corvus Consulting; Nicholas Edwards, founder and CEO of winning company TunnelVue; Robert Stewart Jr., president and CEO of Federal Government Experts; and judge Bob Gourley, co-founder and CTO of OODA LLC.

A technology that provides network-wide encryption throughout the existence of its information was identified as the winner of the latest AFCEA Innovation Showcase. The competition was the second in a series of individual competitions running into the fall.

October 11, 2019
By Kimberly Underwood
DARPA’s Blackjack program wilDARPA’s Blackjack program will leverage commercial low Earth orbit solutions, says Paul “Rusty” Thomas, Blackjack program manager. Concept graphic courtesy of DARPAl leverage commercial low Earth orbit solutions, says Paul “Rusty” Thomas, Blackjack program manager. Credit: Concept graphic courtesy of DARPA

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is seeing initial success from its Blackjack program, according to Paul “Rusty” Thomas, program manager. The research agency is developing a subset of a constellation, 20 low Earth orbit (LEO) globe-to-globe satellites, to demonstrate a new way of building out space systems.

“We are looking at how we might do space architecture differently,” said Thomas. “We want to limit the integration time, so we can actually get to the point where a payload might not even know what bus it is going to go on, and you can actually think of the payload as the mission.”

October 7, 2019
Posted by Julianne Simpson
Credit: Lemberg Vector studio

A new study shows that robots could be taught to recognize human emotions from the way people move.

Researchers from Warwick Business School, University of Plymouth, Donders Centre for Cognition at Radboud University in the Netherlands, and the Bristol Robotics Lab at the University of the West of England, found humans could recognize excitement, sadness and aggression from the way people moved, even if they could not see their facial expressions or hear their voice.

September 30, 2019
By Maryann Lawlor
 Putting content in predetermined structures facilitates sharing, tracking and reusing.

Although computers are full of data, unless it’s structured, it can’t really be considered information—or knowledge. Unfortunately, a great deal of the documents most organizations rely on were created without structure in mind, making it difficult to find, hard to collate or compare and therefore less valuable.

Chad Dybdahl, solutions consultant, Adobe Technical Communications, shared his expertise about the value of establishing a structured data system during a recent SIGNAL Media webinar. Dybdahl didn’t sugarcoat the challenges: Going from business as usual to a structured content environment poses some trials and tribulations. But Dybdahl believes making the transition is worth overcoming those ordeals.

October 7, 2019
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
Sandia National Laboratories is pursuing a heartbeat-based technology for a security application. Credit: Shutterstock/LuckyStep

Sandia National Laboratories in New Mexico is testing security applications that depend on a user’s heartbeat. Under a recently signed Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (CRADA), Albuquerque-based Aquila Inc. will create and test a wearable prototype that issues a real-time identifying signature based on the electrical activity of the user’s heart, according to a report from Sandia.

The electrocardiogram signals are sent from the wearable technology—which could be a wristband or a chest strap—to identify a person and grant them access to facilities or other security applications. 

October 4, 2019
Posted by George I. Seffers
A new policy approved by the secretary of the Army requires the use of advanced manufacturing techniques, which included 3D printing, for new and existing systems. Credit: Pixabay/mebner1

Secretary of the Army Ryan D. McCarthy has approved a new policy on advanced manufacturing designed to help the Army secure a competitive edge against near-peer adversaries.

October 1, 2019
By Lt. Gen. Susan Lawrence, USA (Ret.)

If you haven’t been paying attention, virtual reality (VR) is now real (pun intended). No longer an overhyped curio of the commercial gaming world, VR—along with augmented reality and other immersive technologies collectively known as extended reality (XR)—is advancing across the military community.

“This is cutting-edge technology,” Gen. James McConville, USA, now the U.S. Army’s chief of staff, told lawmakers in May. “It is going to transform the way we train soldiers and the way soldiers operate in combat. We’re excited about it.”

October 1, 2019
By Kimberly Underwood
Three groups of researchers in Finland conduct outdoor experiments at Tampere University’s Hervanta campus to simultaneously jam a radio-controlled improvised explosive device while receiving tactical communication signals on the same frequency band.  Tampere University

Military communicators have long been transmitting and receiving signals to aid decision making and warfighter operations. But the ability to transmit and receive radio signals on the same frequency, simultaneously, would prove to be a crucial ability, researchers say. This capability, known as same-frequency simultaneous transmission and reception, or SF-STAR, employed with full-duplex radio technology could well be a superpower, says Taneli Riihonen, assistant professor, Information Technology and Communication Sciences, Tampere University, Finland.

October 1, 2019
By Kimberly Underwood

NATO’s Science and Technology Organization took notice of the military potential of same-frequency simultaneous transmission and reception, or SF-STAR, capability employed with full-duplex radio technology, and in 2017 formed an exploratory team to examine the potential use in tactical communications and electronic warfare.

October 1, 2019
By Henry S. Kenyon

Developed during the Cold War to direct U.S. and NATO fighter aircraft against the threat of incoming Soviet aircraft over Western Europe, the Link 16 datalink system is now becoming a ubiquitous situational awareness and command and control tool capable of providing all echelons and services with both theater and tactical battlespace data.

Pages