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.
NATO Exercise in Ukraine Coincided with MH-17 Shoot-down 2014 07 24 Rapid Trident was omitted from the flurry of coverage on the shoot-down MH-17.
From the U.S. Army in Europe website:
Rapid Trident supports interoperability among Ukraine, the United States, NATO and Partnership for Peace member nations. The exercise helps prepare participants to operate successfully in a joint, multinational, integrated environment with host-nation support from civil and governmental agencies. ...
Warning of ’imminent’ terror attack in Norway 2014 07 24 Norwegians were warned Thursday of the concrete possibility of a terror attack occurring in that country at the hands of people with connections to an extremist group in Syria.
A press conference was called in Oslo, Norway on Thursday where an announcement was made of a "possible concrete threat" to national security in that country from terrorists related to an extremist ...
Judge says government can access everything in a Gmail account 2014 07 24 All your emails are belong to us.
At least that’s what the latest court order from a judge in New York says. The warrant, granted on June 11, states that the government can access all the content and files contained in a Gmail account.
Yes, this is a significant blow to privacy.
The subject of this specific search relates to a money laundering ...
Air Algerie AH5017 with 116 onboard goes missing for hours, found crashed in Mali 2014 07 24 An Air Algerie flight carrying 110 passengers and six crew members has reportedly crashed in Mali after having disappeared from radar early on Thursday morning between Burkina Faso and Algeria.
A French Ministry of Defense official told Fox News that the two French fighter jets located the wreckage of the plane, which had crashed in Mali. An airport official additionally confirmed ...