• BAE and Portendo join forces on IED detector

    The device aims a laser beam at a particular area suspected to hide an IED; the reflected light is collected by the apparatus and is analyzed using a Raman scattering method, which provides a unique molecular signature which can be compared against an explosives database; Raman spectroscopy has long been thought to hold promise for such applications, but it typically provides a very weak signal; until now

  • DARPA looking for automated insider threat spotter

    The U.S. National Counterintelligence Strategy asserts that “Trusted insiders — are targeting the US information infrastructure for exploitation, disruption, and potential destruction”; DARPA, the Pentagon research arm, is soliciting idea for technology which will automatically spot — and eliminate — insider threat to U.S. information infrastructure

  • Israel buys advanced commando transport

    All of Iran’s nuclear weapons-related facilities can be destroyed from the air, but in some cases — for example, labs and design offices located in densely populated areas — special forces may be preferable in order to avoid civilian casualties; commandos would also be useful if leaders of the Iranian program — nuclear scientists and members of the Revolutionary Guard — were targeted for assassination in order to deal the Iranian program an even heavier blow; Israel buys an advanced version of the C-130J, which has been modified for special operation missions

  • U.S. Air Force shifts 30,000 troops to "cyberwar front lines"

    The USAF has assigned 30,000 to cyberwarfare specialties; 3,000 will become cyberspace officers; Brigadier David Cotton, director of cyberspace transformation, says about the new specialty: “It’s not just spray paint, it’s a new mindset”

  • U.S. Army's XM25 smart grenade launcher described as "game changer"

    New smart grenade launcher described as a “game changer”; the XM25 can fire 25mm rounds that explode at any distance set by a soldier, effective at a range of up to 700 meters; the 14-pound, $25,000 gun can fire rounds in just seconds, it could replace the need to call in fire missions, artillery, or air strikes in some situations, which can take anywhere from several minutes to an hour to arrive

  • Russians say they are developing new weapon for space defense

    Russia says it is deploying a “fundamentally new weapon” to ward off future threats from space; Russian brigadier says that “In the near future we will have to perform the task of protecting Moscow from space-based threats,” adding that he hoped the potential protection would be enough and it would not actually have to be used

  • Cheonan destroyed by North Korean torpedoes

    Traces of explosives collected from the wreckage of a sunken South Korean naval ship and the sea bed have been found to be identical in composition to those used in North Korean torpedoes; investigators found a powerful bomb ingredient, known as RDX, in the wreckage; ship was destroyed by an underwater “non-contact” explosion, typical of an advanced torpedo design

  • Chinese nationals convicted of illegally exporting military technology to China

    The Chinese broad campaign of stealing U.S. military and commercial technology intensifies, but so does the rate of conviction of Chinese and American nationals who are the foot soldiers in this campaign; two Chinese nationals are convicted in Massachusetts for illegally delivering to China electronics components used in military radar and electronic warfare

  • Cobham develops more accurate, cost-effective landmine detector

    The Red Cross estimates that 60-100 million mines are in place in 62 countries, causing 800 deaths each month; clearing mines is an expensive proposition, averaging £1m/km2; much of this cost is owed to high number of false alarms from metal detectors; British company develops a dual-sensor mine detector that enables nearly 33 percent more land to be cleared within existing budgets

  • General Dynamics acquires explosives disposal specialist

    General Dynamics assesses that anti-U.S. militants will increase their activities both at home and against U.S. troops abroad; the company acquires a specialist in demilitarization, incineration, and disposal of munitions, explosives, and explosive wastes

  • DARPA looks to revive WWII German globe-trotting bomber plan

    DARPA’s ArcLight program envisions a boost glide re-entry vehicle (BGRV) with a smallish naval launch tube type rocket firing a pocket, unmanned “Silbervogel” (this is the WWII German original) into space followed by hypersonic re-entry no more than 2,000 miles away

  • Obama permits CIA to broaden UAV war target list in Pakistan

    President Obama gave the CIA secret permission to attack a wider range of targets, including suspected militants whose names are not known, as part of a dramatic expansion of its campaign of UAV strikes in Pakistan’s border region; of more than 500 people who U.S. officials say have been killed since the pace of strikes intensified, the vast majority have been individuals whose names were unknown, or about whom the agency had only fragmentary information. In some cases, the CIA discovered only after an attack that the casualties included a suspected terrorist whom it had been seeking

  • Manned troop supply helicopter converted to unmanned helicopter

    Lockheed Martin, Kaman convert a manned to an unmanned helicopter; the single-seat heavy-lift helicopter will deliver sling loads up to 6,000 lb at sea level and 4,300 lb at 15,000 ft

  • Ungainly military boat center of attention

    An ungainly — some would say outright ugly — boat is drawing a lot of attention; the name of the boat is Stiletto and it is described as the largest all-carbon power boat in the world; its immediate mission is to support drug enforcement operations in Central and South America, but its long-term — and more significant — contribution is to help the military develop future technologies

  • Using sports-TV technology to help the military in the field

    One thing which would help soldiers in the field is the application of sports-TV technology — instant replays, high-definition views of targets shot from multiple angles, audio feeds to accompany the video, a digital map that could be laid over images to pinpoint locations, and more — to UAV video analysis; each day commercial broadcasters create and successfully manage 30 times the volume of video and other digital content that the military struggles with