• Iran shipped advanced radar systems to Syria

    Iran has supplied Syria with advanced radar system which would make it more difficult for Israel to over-fly Syrian air space in the event of an Israeli attack on Iran’s nuclear weapons facilities; the radar would also offer protection to thousands of Hezbollah medium- and long-range missiles warehoused on Syrian soil just across the border with Lebanon

  • DARPA looking for solar cells that can withstand the rigors of war

    DARPA is investing $3.8 million into the creation of high-powered, lightweight solar cells that can “stand up to battle conditions and environmental extremes”; thin-film, flexible solar cells are a major priority for the military, because they can be applied onto almost everything — from tents to uniforms — and would minimize the number of generators and portable battery packs needed by troops in battle

  • Mexican cartels operate permanent lookout bases in Arizona to monitor U.S. law enforcement

    Mexican drug cartels now maintain permanent lookout bases in strategic locations in the hills of southern Arizona from which their scouts can monitor every move made by law enforcement officials; the scouts are supplied by drivers who bring them food, water, batteries for radios — all the items they need to stay in the wilderness for a long time; “To say that this area is out of control is an understatement,” says a border patrol agent

  • USAF chooses Missouri, Montana bases for MQ-1, MQ-9 ground control stations

    The U.S. Air Force on Monday announced its basing decision for the MQ-1 Predator and MQ-9 Reaper ground control stations: Whiteman Air Force Base, Missouri, and Ellsworth AFB, South Dakota

  • Landmine detector made from off-the-shelf components

    Researchers in the United States have developed a low-cost technology to detect landmines using a novel acoustic/microwave system; the system, made from off-the-shelf components, costs about $10,000. This compares to laser-based Doppler remote detection systems that sells for upwards of $1 million

  • Hi-tech navies protect shipping from Somalia's pirates

    The six ship EU force and other Western-led forces patrolling the Gulf of Aden have disrupted fifty-nine pirate groups in April and May alone; some naval forces in the region concentrate on escorting convoys of their own national vessels, while the Western-led forces spread themselves across the region saying they want to protect all shipping regardless of flag

  • Researchers show that light can be bent around corners

    Israeli researchers show that small beams of light — called Airy beams — can be bent in a laboratory setting; Airy beams promise remarkable advances for engineering, and they could form the technology behind space-age “light bullets” — as effective and precise defense technologies for police and the military, but also as a new communications interface between transponders

  • DARPA aims to help U.S. Army snipers to, well, aim better

    DARPA wants to help the U.S. Army’s snipers; in the works: programs aiming to give snipers the power to hit a target from 2,000 meters away in winds as high as forty miles per hour; making bullets that can change course in mid-air; and a stealth sniper scope that would make shooters all but invisible

  • Robot assembles itself, then flies

    Soldiers and first responders often find themselves in situations of surveillance or search and rescue, in which they may have to figure out on the fly what size and shape surveillance or search-and-rescue robot they need; Swiss researchers develop a flying platform made up of autonomous wheeled vehicle that lock together to share the task of controlled and autonomous flight; this self-sufficient wheeled DFA has another advantage: if one of the parts of which it consists breaks, the robot can reconfigure itself or substitute in a different part

  • Autonomous vehicles to map battle environments

    War is always accompanied by the fog of war; to pierce that fog, researchers at Cranfield University are working on developing swarms of autonomous military vehicles capable of sharing and overlapping video images to create high-resolution 3D panoramic scenes of dangerous battlefield areas

  • UN criticism of U.S. UAV war not likely to stop CIA drone strikes

    A UN report on the U.S. UAVs against terrorists and insurgents calls on countries to lay out rules and safeguards for carrying out the strikes, publish figures on civilian casualties, and prove they have attempted to capture or incapacitate suspects without killing them

  • Birmingham area law enforcement deploying technology quickly to share paperwork in patrol cars

    Police in Alabama begins to use New World software system which lets law enforcement officials create a one-stop shop for identifying suspects and spotting crime trends, among other things; it is a way wirelessly to integrate data from the field, dispatch, the records room, the jail and even neighboring departments

  • Senate panel rejects Pentagon counter-IED group $400 million emergency funding request

    Senate panel denies Pentagon’s counter-IED group a $400 million emergency request; lawmakers say that counter-IED organization has misused funds allocated to it — among other things, to hire private contractors in Iraq to hunt down insurgents; senators also criticized the group for planning to use emergency funds to fund long term projects such as airships and UAV radar

  • 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