News Briefs

September 11, 2019
 
Computer scientists at the U.S. Army¹s Combat Capabilities Development Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground are working on biometric software systems to combat so-called "deepfake" or bogus media. Credit: Shutterstock/meyer_solutions

At the Combat Capabilities Development Command at Aberdeen Proving Ground, Maryland, researchers in the Science and Technology Directorate are working to meet a joint urgent operational needs statement regarding biometric dominance. The directorate’s Intelligence Systems and Processing Division is creating two biometric systems, called VICE and VIBES, to protect warfighters as well as discern media fakes, explained Keith Riser, computer scientist, Intelligence Systems and Processing Division, Intelligence and Information Warfare Directorate. 

August 27, 2019
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
The one-year old Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency at the Department of Homeland Security is coordinating the protection of the nation’s critical infrastructure. Credit: Shutterstock/Imfoto

The Department of Homeland Security’s new Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, known as CISA, is charged with coordinating the protection of America’s critical infrastructure from cyber as well as physical attacks. Director Christopher Krebs recently released the agency’s top operational priorities. CISA, which was created in November 2018, will initially tackle supply chain risks, election security and industrial control system security, among other measures, according to the document, Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency: Strategic Intent.

September 5, 2019
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
Col. James “Hondo” Geurts (center in necktie), USAF (Ret.), assistant secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition, explains the Department of the Navy's creation of so-called NavalX Tech Bridges, designed to bring in more innovation to the Navy and Marine Corps. U.S. Navy photo by Bobby Cummings.

A new partnership between NavalX, the Navy's Systems Commands and the Office of Naval Research (ONR) will strive to bring innovation into the Navy from hubs around the country. At a media event yesterday, Col. James “Hondo” Geurts, USAF (Ret.), assistant secretary of the Navy for Research, Development and Acquisition, announced the creation of so-called NavalX Tech Bridges, according to reports from the Navy’s Research, Development and Acquisition Public Affairs Office and the Office of Naval Research’s Warren Duffie.

August 27, 2019
Posted by Maryann Lawlor
Sensors like those the U.S. Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate and Intellisense Systems are developing can help give residents ample notice to evacuate before water levels such as those experienced on the Arkansas River in Pine Bluff, Arkansas, earlier this year. Photo by Jocelyn Augustino/FEMA

Deployable flood inundation sensors based on the Internet of Things are being developed to monitor flood-prone areas in real time to rapidly detect them and alert officials, industry and citizens to potential threats. State and local government jurisdictions operationally field tested early versions of the technology over a nine-month period. During the next phase, the sensors will be enhanced for production and commercialization to both domestic and international partners to help densify their flood sensing networks for alerts, warnings and notifications.

July 17, 2019
Posted by George I. Seffers
U.S. Cyber Command officials recently released a list of tough technical challenges areas, for which solutions may not yet exist. Credit: DR MANAGER/Shutterstock

The U.S. Cyber Command has released a list of 39 challenge problems fitting under 12 categories: vulnerabilities, malware, analytics, implant, situational awareness, capability development, persona, hunt, mission management, attack, security and blockchain.

July 24, 2019
By Robert K. Ackerman
The National Security Agency (NSA) has created a new Cybersecurity Directorate to improve cyber partnerships and increase intelligence coordination.

The National Security Agency (NSA) is launching its new Cybersecurity Directorate with a promise of “opening the door to partners and customers on a wide variety of cybersecurity efforts,” according to an agency statement. These partners will include established government allies in the cyber domain such as the U.S. Cyber Command, the Department of Homeland Security and the FBI. The directorate also is promising to share information better with its customers to help them defend against malicious cyber activity.

July 17, 2019
Posted by Julianne Simpson
A micro-bristle-bot is shown next to a U.S. penny for size comparison. Credit: Allison Carter, Georgia Tech

Researchers at the Georgia Institute of Technology have created a new type of tiny 3D-printed robot that moves by harnessing the vibration from piezoelectric actuators, ultrasound sources or even tiny speakers.

The size of the world’s smallest ant, these “micro-bristle-bots” could sense changes in the environment and swarm together to move materials—or perhaps one day repair injuries inside the human body.

July 17, 2019
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
Dana Deasy, the Defense Department’s CIO, pictured speaking at AFCEA’s 2018 Defensive Cyber Operations Symposium in Baltimore, is stressing the role of cloud and artificial intelligence as part of DOD’s new Digital Modernization Strategy. Credit: Michael Carpenter

On Friday, the Defense Department released its DOD Digital Modernization Strategy, aiming to greatly improve the military’s digital environment. The strategy aims to modernize the DOD’s joint information enterprise environment by advancing its fixed and mobile networking capabilities,; DOD-wide enterprise information technology (IT) services, coordinated technology refresh efforts, joint cybersecurity capability and access to data.

July 15, 2019
Posted by: George I. Seffers
Using the Army’s cyber-enabled Counter-Unmanned Aerial System, soldiers were able to detect and counter small drones during training. Credit: U.S. Army

Soldiers with the 3rd Brigade Combat Team, 1st Cavalry Division (3/1 CD) recently tried out a cyber-based prototype that complements electronic warfare systems designed to combat enemy drones, the Army has revealed in an online article.

Using the Army's enhanced cyber-enabled Counter-Unmanned Aerial System (C-UAS) capability, soldiers were able to detect and counter common, small drones during their training. The new prototype alerted soldiers to the presence of a drone and provided a means to target it, for protection across the brigade.

July 15, 2019
Posted by George I. Seffers
The DHS Science and Technology Directorate is funding a $35 million, 10-year effort to create a research center of excellence focused on preventing and countering terrorist attacks. Credit: deepspace/Shutterstock

The Department of Homeland Security Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) announced today $35 million in funding opportunities for a new DHS Center of Excellence (COE) for Terrorism Prevention and Counterterrorism Research (TPCR). Accredited U.S. colleges and universities are invited to submit proposals as the center lead or as an individual partner to work with the lead institution in support of the center’s activities.

July 11, 2019
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
The Navy is pursuing machine learning-based cyber security through a new $100,000 prize challenge. Credit: U.S. Navy illustration by Frances Zukowski

The Navy is seeking advanced cybersecurity solutions based on artificial intelligence and machine learning technologies, the Naval Information Warfare Systems Command announced in a recent statement.

The Command, known now as NAVWAR, and the Program Executive Office for Command, Control, Communications, Computers and Intelligence (PEO C4I) are co-sponsoring the so-called Artificial Intelligence Applications to Autonomous Cybersecurity Challenge (AI ATAC).

July 10, 2019
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
Advanced digital tools, accessed through as-a-service models, offer benefits to the military, a study from Frost &Sullivan says. Credit: Shutterstock/Titina Ongkantong

The military and the government in the United Kingdom are employing cloud computing, big data, data analytics, Internet of Things devices, artificial intelligence, augmented reality and blockchain more often, according to recent study from London-based Frost & Sullivan, entitled Digitalization in Defense.

The result improves the continuity of operations and brings the military to a higher level of combat readiness, said Alix Leboulanger, senior industry analyst of defense at Frost & Sullivan.

July 9, 2019
 
The U.S. Marine Corps is replacing some of its aging infrastructure at its recruiting centers to improve connectivity and support Internet of Things devices, making the recruiting process easier. Marine Corps recruits with the India Company, 3rd Recruit Training Battalion, prepare for initial drill evaluations on Parris Island, South Carolina, last fall. Credit: U.S. Marine Corps photo by Sgt. Dana Beesley.

The Marine Corps is replacing aging communications technology at its U.S recruiting centers and has selected New-York-based MetTel to provide the improved infrastructure. MetTel will upgrade the service’s aging T-1 transmission lines with high speed broadband.

“We are putting broadband Internet services into 1,500 of their recruiting stations,” said Diana Gowen, general manager and senior vice president, MetTel Federal. “Compared to what they had previously, they're saving about 70% in telecommunications costs.”

June 19, 2019
Posted by Gopika Ramesh
The Wave Relay MANET assists the CRS(I) in communications by eliminating the need for fixed infrastructure. It is helpful for applications that require complete mobility. Photo credits: Persistent Systems.

The U.S. Army chose New York-based Persistent Systems Wave Relay mobile ad hoc networking technology (MANET) to equip the Common Robotic System-Individual (CRS(I)) program of record. The company will be part of the QinetiQ North America (QNA) team supporting the CRS(I) program. The Army made the selection in March, the company reported.

Weighing less than 25 pounds, the CRS(I) is a backpackable robot that dismounted users can carry with sensor suites for viewing and detecting threats to improve situational awareness on the battlefield.

June 19, 2019
Posted by Gopika Ramesh
A U.S. Marine Corps Lance Corporal is assembling an AN/PRC-117G radio on the flight deck of an amphibious assault ship. The Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) adds updated firmware to the radio, giving warfighters more advanced satellite communications.” Credit: U.S. Marine Corps photo by Lance Cpl. Tawanya Norwood.

The U.S. Marine Corps recently began using a next-generation narrowband satellite communication system called the Mobile User Objective System (MUOS) to help warfighters in connecting to networks on the battlefield and communicate in a tactical environment.

MUOS works by using antennas that let Marines access SATCOM networks while also providing them with secure and nonsecure internet access. The system applies to both mobile or stationary marines and was fielded in the first quarter of 2019. It includes updated firmware to the AN/PRC-117G radio system and one of three antenna kits.

June 17, 2019
Posted by George I. Seffers
Afsaneh Rabiei examines a sample of composite metal foam. Her pioneering research has led to armor plating that weighs far less than steel and is capable of stopping armor-piercing .50-caliber bullets. Credit: North Carolina State University

A composite metal foam (CMF) material developed by researchers at North Carolina State University can stop ball and armor-piercing .50 caliber rounds as well as conventional steel armor, even though it weighs less than half as much, the university recently announced. The finding means that vehicle designers will be able to develop lighter military vehicles without sacrificing safety, or can improve protection without making vehicles heavier.

Previous research has resulted in CMF material capable of shredding bullets.

June 17, 2019
Posted by Gopika Ramesh

The Defense Information Technology Contracting Organization (DITCO) is reducing their contracting fee for enterprise acquisition services from 2.5% to 2.25% starting on October 1st, 2019 according to a recent release by the Defense Information Systems Agency (DISA). This will be coinciding with the start of fiscal year 2020.

In a statement, Christopher Barnhurst, DISA’s chief financial officer said, “DITCO’s dedication to controlling costs while evolving service offerings has resulted in the ability to lower fees to customers, thereby enabling reinvestment into lethality for the DOD."

June 13, 2019
Posted by George I. Seffers
The U.S. Air Force has successfully launched the AGM-183A Air Launched Rapid Response Weapon from a B-52 Stratofortress for the first time. Credit: Airman 1st Class Victor J. Caputo/U.S. Air Force

The U.S. Air Force successfully conducted the first flight test of its AGM-183A Air Launched Rapid Response Weapon, or ARRW, on a B-52 Stratofortress aircraft on June 12 at Edwards Air Force Base, California, the service has announced.

June 6, 2019
By Maryann Lawlor
Unlike standard GPS-enabled map apps, QuickRoute settings include options such as “Use Controlled Opposing Lanes” and “Show QuickRoute Alerts on Map.”

First responders can’t always use the same apps the general public depends on to get to their destination by the fastest route. Commercial apps may not factor in delays such as weather events, traffic accidents or the size and weight of their vehicles.

May 30, 2019
Posted by Kimberly Underwood
A new agreement between the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and the U.S. Air Force is meant to accelerate the use of artificial intelligence in Air Force operations. Credit: Shutterstock/Yousif Al Saif

On May 23 the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, known as MIT, announced that it had signed an agreement with the U.S. Air Force to carry out fundamental research on artificial intelligence.

The MIT-Air Force AI Accelerator program is aimed at bringing rapid prototyping, scalability and the use of advanced algorithms and systems into Air Force operations.

“MIT and the U.S. Air Force have signed an agreement to launch a new program designed to make fundamental advances in artificial intelligence that could improve Air Force operations while also addressing broader societal needs,” a university official stated.

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