No one wants to stumble upon the radiation warning sign. But its presence at least indicates that hazardous materials have been detected, and that there might be some form of control of those materials.
In high-risk scenarios without up-to-date signage (war zones, abandoned testing sites, and now airport security lines), it could prove quite handy to have a handheld device that can detect hard radiation--including nuclear weapons.
When Army National Guardsman Ed Salau's Bradley Fighting Vehicle filled with smoke on November 15, 2004--"sometime after George Bush declared victory on the aircraft carrier and sometime before we won the war in Iraq," he likes to say--Salau and his gunner managed to crawl out of the hatch.
The first thing that hit them was that they'd somehow managed to survive two rocket-propelled grenades that had been fired at their vehicle. But Salau's leg seemed to dangle and flop below him. With the battle still raging around him, he grabbed the radioman's belt … Read more
The Department of Energy today backed a deal to connect solar electric panels at 160,000 locations on military bases, a move which could double the number of residential solar installations in the U.S.
The DOE said it has provided a conditional commitment to guarantee a $344 million loan for the SolarStrong Project, which will help the military meet its renewable energy targets and bring solar power to a many states which now have little.
A New Hampshire company says it has developed a stealth boat that can reduce water friction by a factor of 900 by producing a layer of gas around its underwater hull.
Juliet Marine Systems recently released photos of its Ghost boat, claiming it can travel up to 60 mph. The craft could be used to protect Navy and other ships from pirate attacks and other enemies.
The Ghost produces an effect in the water called supercavitation. Seen in some torpedoes, it can occur when an object moves fast enough through water to lower the pressure and create a gas bubble, reducing drag.
Juliet says the Ghost is the first supercavitating craft of its kind, and a 150-foot version is under construction in collaboration with a defense contractor. … Read more
But the plant, whose scientific name is Huperzia serrata, is both slow-growing and overharvested, resulting in a price tag upwards of $1,000 per milligram. The Yale team's success creating a … Read more
If you're going to fight an Islamic insurgency, you'd think there would be more practical tools than an airship.
But that's just what Thailand has been using to track militants in its restive southern provinces. Its manned Aeros 40D Sky Dragon, manufactured by California-based Aeros, has again run into technical trouble, making an emergency landing in the south's Pattani Province recently.
The Sky Dragon developed propeller problems and began losing altitude. It sustained some damage in an emergency landing, but no one was hurt, the Bangkok Post reported.
The 350 million baht ($11.7 million) U.S.-built craft has been seen as a boondoggle in Thailand due to problems with equipment and delays in delivery. It was returned to Aeros last year following major leaks, according to the paper.
Because the warranty has expired, the Royal Thai Army will have to pay for repairs.
The airship has a rigid structure and is thus not a blimp, and it measures 11.6 yards wide by 51 yards long. It's supposed to fly up to an altitude of 10,000 feet with a top speed of 54.6 mph. Its operational range is 348 miles.
The military has been using the dirigible for surveillance in the insurgency, which has claimed thousands of lives. It's been equipped with high-def night cameras and communications systems. … Read more
Qinetiq North America today launched a more compact, lighter version of its Dragon Runner military robot that can be thrown into hostile environments to reconnoiter before troops move in.
Weighing about 10 pounds and measuring 15 inches long by 13.5 inches wide, the DR10 can be transported in a pack and easily deployed in the field. It's controlled with a wearable interface and has sensors that allow it to operate day and night.
The machine is meant to support small military units and first responders, and can carry out IED disposal missions and conduct surveillance.
As seen in the promo vid below, the DR10 can be configured with different payloads such as cameras, sensors, and robotic arms, and can move on tracks or wheels. It will automatically flip its video images, antennas, and controls after being thrown. … Read more
DARPA this morning launched a rocket carrying what's hoped to be an unbelievably fast unmanned plane that can fly at 13,000 mph, an unprecedented speed that would take it from New York to Los Angeles in less than 12 minutes and potentially deliver a military strike anywhere in the world in under an hour.
Designed to explore long-duration hypersonic flight, the Falcon Hypersonic Technology Vehicle 2 (HTV-2) was launched aboard a Minotaur IV Lite rocket from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California.
It's expected to glide through the upper atmosphere over the Pacific at up to Mach … Read more
The U.S. Army needs more steel in the ground when it comes to renewable energy.
The Army today announced a special task force called the Energy Initiatives Office (EIO) designed to speed up deployment of solar and wind power at its bases. The task force is being created to help meet the Army's ambitious goal of getting 25 percent of its energy from renewable sources by 2025.
"We view ourselves as a target-rich environment for doing a better job with taxpayer dollars and being good stewards of the environment," said John McHugh, secretary of the Army … Read more
Instead of human divers, the Army has used a robotic underwater vehicle to help recover and destroy more than 300 pounds of explosives found off Hawaii in an area that was a dumping ground for munitions after World War II.
Working from a barge, operators deployed the remotely operated underwater munitions recovery system (Roumrs) over Ordnance Reef, an area off the Waianae Coast of Oahu.
Equipped with lighting, scanning sonar, and video cameras, the off-the-shelf ROV has force-feedback manipulators that mimic hand and arm movements of its operator. It recovered 74 pieces of exploded ordnance and 2,300 small arms munitions, clearing most of the area, the Associated Press reported. … Read more