Soldiers: Your underwear of the future will do more than prevent crotch rot. It’ll protect you from injuries, monitor your vitals, and even “harvest” your energy. That is, if a new project from Darpa’s Defense Sciences Office works out as planned. That’s an illustration, to the right, of what Darpa thinks its “Warrior Web” onesie might look like.
So far, the project is still in the draw-a-cartoon-with-a-six-pack-in-tights stage — a long way off from the “adaptive, compliant, nearly transparent, quasi-active joint support suit,” which can “mitigate musculoskeletal injury caused by discrete dynamic events while maintaining soldier performance,” dreamed up by Darpa. An introductory meeting of potential researchers is set for mid-October.
Musculoskeletal injuries (a blanket term for anything from pain caused by overuse to stress fractures and joint derangements) are a real problem in the military. According to a 2010 study, there were 743,547 injury-related musculoskeletal conditions amongst military personnel in 2006. In 2004, 44 percent of military fatalities resulted from unintentional injuries. These Achilles tendon strains, torn meniscuses, and sore labrums slow our soldiers down, rendering them less effective and placing them in more danger.
But protecting their knees is just the start of what Warrior Web aims to do. Darpa says it’s looking for experts in the following fields for the Warrior Web:
• Joint support and musculoskeletal injury mitigation
• Dynamics of soldier action and external load
• Biomechanical and joint modeling and testing
• Efficient and compliant actuation
• Energy regeneration and harvesting
• Dynamic structural stiffness tuning
• Adaptive sensing and control for biomechatronics
• Materials, fabrics, and structures to enhance the human-to-equipment interface
Wait — “musculoskeletal injury mitigation”? “Energy regeneration”? Is this glorified pair of long underwear supposed to reduce inflammation and heal stress fractures while it pumps B-12 (or maybe amphetamines) into the blood stream? Sounds, uh, ambitious. And if I were a soldier, I’d be wary of modeling any garment that is going to “harvest” anything from me.
Germany’s Merkel shrugs aside new book about communist-era past, says she never hid anything 2013 05 25
Chancellor Angela Merkel has shrugged aside a book that suggests she may have been closer to East Germany’s communist system than previously thought, saying she’s never hidden anything.
The 58-year-old Merkel grew up in East Germany and entered politics as communism crumbled in 1989. It’s long been known that, like many, she joined the communist youth organization. She has said she ...
‘Lack of public debate on immigration caused Stockholm riots’ 2013 05 25
Mishra Mrutyuanjai raises some points that we discussed with Mikael Jalving about in our Red Ice Radio program, in January earlier this year.
Sweden should put its political correctness aside and start an open debate on immigration as it’s the only way to avoid a repeat of the Stockholm riots, Mishra Mrutyuanjai, Swedish Democrats movement member, told RT.
Stockholm is reeling as ...
Stockholm riots spread west on sixth night 2013 05 25
Comments in italics
Stockholm experienced a sixth straight night of riots early Saturday, with cars torched in several immigrant-dominated suburbs, as Britain and the United States warned against travelling to the hotspots.
Nearly a week of unrest, which spread briefly Friday night to the medium-sized city of Oerebro 160 kilometers (100 miles) west of Stockholm, have put Sweden’s reputation as an oasis ...
Marc Abramsson from the National Democratic Party comment on the Husby Riots in Stockholm 2013 05 25
Sweden could be paying a tough price for its policies on immigrants and multiculturalism. A Stockholm suburb erupted into violence for a few hours, as crowds of angry, masked youths from migrant families burned cars, smashed windows and hurled stones at police officers.
What’s believed to have fueled the riot was the death of a 69-year-old man, allegedly shot by ...
‘They don’t want to integrate’: Fifth night of youth rioting rocks Stockholm 2013 05 25
Youth gang riots in the Swedish capital Stockholm have entered fifth straight night. Hundreds of mostly immigrant teenagers tore through the suburbs, smashing windows and burning cars in the country’s worst outbreak of violence in years.
At least six vehicles were torched throughout the city late on Thursday while the police called for reinforcements from other Swedish cities bracing for further ...