• 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

  • U.S. hypersonic glider lost in space

    The glider is designed to fly through the upper reaches of Earth’s atmosphere at speeds of up to Mach 20, providing the U.S. military with a possible platform for striking targets anywhere on the planet with conventional weapons; the hypersonic program appears to fit in with U.S. plans to develop a way of hitting distant targets with conventional weapons within an hour, dubbed Prompt Global Strike

  • Northrop Grumman delivers mine detection pods ahead of schedule

    Here are words you do not read every day: a government defense contractor delivers what it was contracted for ahead of schedule; this is what Northrop Grumman did, delivering the mine detection system it has developed for the U.S. Navy three weeks ahead of schedule

  • Pentagon looking for augmented cognition troop trainer

    Today’s troops need to be as cognitively ready as they are physically — if not more; they have also got to spend more time on the ground in urban settings, interacting with locals and canvassing for information; the Pentagon is looking for an immersive troop trainer, one that includes voice-recognition technology, and picks up on vocal tone and facial gestures

  • Detecting sweaty, smelly security threats

    DARPA wants to be able to detect, track, and even positively identify them from a distance — and do so using nothing more than the heat and sweat that emanate from a person’s pores; DARPA envisions myriad civilian applications for the technology, including “identifying and tracking persons from the scenes of various crimes”

  • Update: South Korean corvette was sunk by conventional torpedoes

    On 26 March an explosion destroyed the South Korean corvette Cheonan, killing 46 of its crews of 104; the North Koreans were suspected to be behind the attack, and stories circulated about a midget submarine and “human torpedoes”; an examination of the ship wreckage leads South Korean naval investigators to conclude that it was destroyed by a conventional torpedo of advanced design — and that North Korea was indeed behind the attack; there is an outside possibility that the corvette ran into an old sea mine left floating in the water since the Korean War

  • Aeronautics readies Picador UAV for May first flight

    Aeronautics is moving forward — from September to May — the first autonomous flight of its Picador unmanned helicopter; the Picador is being aimed mainly for navies as a means of replacing their current, manned helicopters in delivering “over the horizon” intelligence and deploying long-range weapon systems

  • Specialty bomb for fighting terrorists in dense urban areas

    The war against terrorists require weapons that can destroy targets in densely populated urban areas — without causing unnecessary damage to the surrounding neighborhood; the U.S. military has developed the new FLM (Focused Lethality Munition) bomb which will use a composite (carbon fiber) casing and replace some of the normal 127.2 kg (280 pounds) of explosives with 93 kg of explosives surrounded by high density filler (fine tungsten powder)

  • Al Qaeda rockets aimed at Israel hit Jordanian port city

    Al Qaeda terrorists fire two Grad rockets from the Egyptian-controlled Sinai peninsula at the Israeli resort town of Eilat, at the northern tip of the Red Sea; the rocket miss Eilat — one hit the neighboring Jordanian port city of Aqaba, the second fell into the sea; in 2005 al Qaeda terrorists used the same area of the Sinai to fire Katyusha rockets at a U.S. warship docked in the port of Aqaba