Archive for the ‘Digitization’ Category

Army Researchers Acquire Two New Supercomputers

Friday, January 1st, 2021

ADELPHI, Md. — Army researchers are upgrading their computing capabilities with the acquisition of two new supercomputers.

The U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Development Command, now known as DEVCOM, Army Research Laboratory is home to the Department of Defense Supercomputing Resource Center, where computer scientists are welcoming the bi-annual technology refresh as part of the DOD High Performance Computing Modernization Program.

The two supercomputers, named Jean and Kay, recognize the remarkable achievements and enduring legacies of Jean Jennings Bartik and Kathleen “Kay” McNulty Mauchly, key contributors and computing pioneers as part of the original team of programmers of the Electronic Numerical Integrator and Computer, or ENIAC, the world’s first general purpose computer.

These systems will join the Betty system in the center’s production high-performance computing infrastructure. The Betty system is named in honor of Frances Elizabeth “Betty” (Snyder) Holberton, another key member of the original ENIAC programmer’s team.

The two systems are both Liqid Computing platforms containing 48 core Intel XEON (Cascade Lake Advanced Performance) processors integrated with the largest solid state file systems the DOD has deployed to date.

The systems are expected to enter production service in the mid-fiscal 2021 timeframe, and will join the center’s Centennial and Hellfire systems towards establishing a cumulative computational capability of 23.3petaflops.

“Jean and Kay will allow ARL to support many of DOD’s most significant modernization challenges to include digital engineering and other emerging workloads,” said ARL DSRC Director Matt Goss. “By adding specialized technology to augment traditional high performance computing with data analytics, these machines will serve as a spring board on which DOD scientists can make game changing discoveries.”

According to ARL computer scientist Bob Sheroke, these systems significantly enhance the program’s ability to support the DOD’s most demanding data-intensive computational challenges, and include emerging technologies and tools for artificial intelligence, data analytics and machine learning.

The systems include embedded capabilities to support persistent services in additional to traditional batch-oriented processing.

“The DOD High Performance Computing Modernization Program, established in 1992, has invested over $1.2 billion at the ARL DSRC, which has maintained the center’s posture as one of the program’s primary HPC centers and one of the top supercomputer sites in the national supercomputing infrastructure,” Sheroke said.

Visit to learn more about center’s computational capabilities and support services.

By U.S. Army DEVCOM Army Research Laboratory Public Affairs

Soldier Integration Facility in Action

Friday, December 18th, 2020

Sergeant Major of the Army Michael Grinston and other senior enlisted leaders run through a synthetic training environment at PEO Soldier’s Soldier Integration Facility (SIF) at Fort Belvoir.

DroneShield Releases US DoD Compliant DroneSentry-C2

Thursday, December 17th, 2020

DroneShield Ltd (ASX:DRO) (“DroneShield”, or “Company”), is pleased to release a US DoD MIL-STD-2525 compliant version of its DroneSentry-C2TM command-and-control system, as part of its continued work with the US Department of Defense.

MIL-STD-2525 refers to a standard structured set of symbology for the display of information in command and control systems and applications, by use by the US Department of Defense, and non-DOD entities such as other Federal agencies and NATO partners. DroneSentry-C2 TM now provides users with industry leading enterprise features and MIL-STD-2525 compliance.

DroneSentry-C2 TM is a common operating picture for the Counter-UxS mission. DroneSentry-C2 TM enables its users to visualize their operational space, integrate with existing perimeter security and C2 systems, and leverage multi-sensor fusion capabilities unique to DroneSentry-C2TM. As a sensor agnostic, open architecture platform, DroneSentry-C2 TM brings advanced interoperability and flexibility to users.

Oleg Vornik, DroneShield’s CEO, commented, “DroneShield has continued to rapidly scale our US efforts. In support of that, we work closely with our customers and partners to incorporate real-world feedback into the continuous development of our solutions.  The specific shaping and standardizing of our offerings to meet the requirements of the US Department of Defense and MIL-STD-2525 is an important part of this work and a testament of our commitment to our customer and their mission.”

For enquiries, please contact [email protected].

SOFWERX – Human-Centered Design for Global Situational Awareness Event

Friday, November 27th, 2020

SOFWERX, in collaboration with USSOCOM PEO-SOF Digital Applications (PEO-SDA), is seeking visionary innovation in the design of user experience with transformational decision support. Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) will contribute to technology roadmap development, experimentation, and Artificial Intelligence (AI)-enabled capabilities to unify the SOF enterprise via a Common Operational Picture (COP) providing global situational awareness.

The event will span February – June 2021.

SMEs needed in the following multi-disciplinary focus areas:

• UX-Oriented Digital Transformation

• SOF Decision Environment / Decision Modeling

• Visual Analytics & Information Visualization

• Haptic Technologies

• Artificial Neural Networks

• Natural Language Processing

• Joint All-Domain Command & Control

• Modular Open Systems Approach

Interested parties must submit NLT 17 December 11:59 PM EST.

Next-Generation Headset Preps Soldiers for Future Battlefield

Tuesday, November 24th, 2020

FORT PICKETT, Va. – The third Capability Set of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) was tested at Fort Pickett by 82nd Airborne Soldiers and 25th Marines during October 2020.

The project uses Soldier Centered Design (SCD) to evaluate the IVAS military fighting goggle through operational evaluations. Soldier involvement and engagement at every stage of prototype development has allowed the fast-paced rapid prototype effort to ensure that the final product will positively increase the situational awareness, lethality, mobility, and performance of the close combat force.

“When I look through the IVAS I see how we’re going to fight on the battlefield of the future,” said Staff Sgt. Kester, Weapons Squad Leader.

The Army is developing IVAS as a single platform that allows the Warfighter to Fight, Rehearse, and Train. It integrates next generation 24/7 situational awareness tools and high-resolution simulations to deliver a single platform that improves Soldier sensing, decision making, target acquisition, and target engagement. The visibility that it gives to higher command and control is unparalleled.

“With IVAS you now have the ability to paint a picture for higher ups, almost instantaneously,” said Sgt. Black, Combat Medic. “So now you have a Colonel who’s watching the battlefield like never before. That’s phenomenal, and that has the potential to increase our lethality in a way that we’ve never seen.”

IVAS also provides increased situational awareness for the leadership on the ground.

“In the field, a big part of my job is command and control,” said 1st Lt. Christopher, Platoon Leader. “I am basically moving my squads like pieces on a chessboard and maneuvering them into position and making sure that they’re in the right place at the right time. For me not only can I see where they are with IVAS, but I can actually go into the system and put a point here and say ‘Hey, you all need to go here’ or ‘Hey there are enemies over here watch out!’ I can also send messages non-verbally, so it is very, very critical for me for the command and control aspect.”

The first IVAS militarized form factor prototype was put through tactical exercise lanes, advance marksmanship, land navigation and squad reconnaissance, movement to contact with hasty attack, and enter and clear a trench to validate the military utility that the technology brings to the squad both day and night. The Soldiers and Marines spent a week learning the new equipment before using it in the various operational tests.

“It was extremely easy to pick up,” said Christopher. “It’s very simple in its controls, the menus and such are very easy to navigate, and they’re categorized in a way that if I want to do this function, easy over there, bring up the map, one button press away.”

Christopher also noted that the Microsoft data collectors had been receptive to their feedback and had already made progress and developments on the input given throughout the touchpoint event. Cpl. Sweckard, Team Leader, 25th Marines also expressed similar sentiments.

“Anytime we conduct any type of training with the IVAS, we immediately make contact with the [data collectors] from Microsoft and provide them with feedback, things that we’ve identified that could be an issue, things that we liked, and how we fixed the issue if we were faced with one,” he said. “That way they can put together the common things that are happening with the device and identify a resolution.”

Because of the similarities in operational responsibilities and as members of the collective close combat force, Marines were present to test the current IVAS capability set specifically during live fire execution.

“What it does for us mainly is combines a lot of things that we currently utilize, such as global positioning devices, or GPS’s, communication devices, as well as land navigation tools and mission planning tools,” said Sweckard. “Those are things that are commonly individual technologies that are now combined into this one system of IVAS.”

The project was initiated in response to an erosion in close combat capability relative to pacing threats identified in the 2018 National Defense Strategy. These capabilities will provide the increased lethality, mobility, and situational awareness necessary to achieve overmatch against our current and future adversaries in any domain.

“I think if it’s in the right hands it can be an effective tool, like an aid bag. An aid bag without a medic is nothing, but an infantry guy with IVAS is something much more,” said Black.

Though the Army is specifically developing this high priority modernization effort, the Marine Corps may also leverage the technology for their close combat operations.

“It will definitely be a force multiplier on the battlefield,” said Sweckard. “As a team leader I have three Marines that are under my charge and my basic mission is to employ those Marines in combat, make those three Marines look like 30. If I can do that, that’s going to make the Marine Corps more lethal. With the IVAS I can better achieve that mission, without a doubt.”

The integrated system is expected to be fielded to Soldiers next year.

“When Lieutenant Colonel Winn told us we want to field it next year I thought that was crazy. Then I looked and thought through it and I could see it, I can see the possibilities,” said Kester. “Some of my combat experiences made me pause for thought to look at it like Russia and China, they’ve been pushing technology like this for the last decade. And what have we been doing? Not that.”

Kester added that though he did not know about IVAS before coming to the third Soldier Touchpoint, as soon as he did, he was onboard with Team IVAS.

“I would say the only thing that’s going to hurt this program is people not being imaginative enough or trying to push the limits of what they think is possible, or what Soldiers want. I am really excited to see where this will go,” said Kester.

Machine Learning Algorithm Could Provide Soldiers Feedback

Saturday, November 14th, 2020

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — A new machine learning algorithm, developed with Army funding, can isolate patterns in brain signals that relate to a specific behavior and then decode it, potentially providing Soldiers with behavioral-based feedback.

“The impact of this work is of great importance to Army and DOD in general, as it pursues a framework for decoding behaviors from brain signals that generate them,” said Dr. Hamid Krim, program manager, Army Research Office, an element of the U.S. Army Combat Capabilities Develop Command, now known as DEVCOM, Army Research Laboratory. “As an example future application, the algorithms could provide Soldiers with needed feedback to take corrective action as a result of fatigue or stress.”

Brain signals contain dynamic neural patterns that reflect a combination of activities simultaneously. For example, the brain can type a message on a keyboard and acknowledge if a person is thirsty at that same time. A standing challenge has been isolating those patterns in brain signals that relate to a specific behavior, such as finger movements.

Doing so, is the first step in developing brain-machine interfaces that help restore lost function for people with neurological and mental disorders, which requires the translation of brain signals into a specific behavior, called decoding.

As part of a Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative grant awarded by ARO and led by Maryam Shanechi, assistant professor at the University Of Southern California Viterbi School Of Engineering, researchers have developed a new machine learning algorithm to address the brain modeling and decoding challenge. The research is published in Nature Neuroscience.

“Our algorithm can, for the first time, dissociate the dynamic patterns in brain signals that relate to specific behaviors and is much better at decoding these behaviors,” said Shanechi, the lead senior author of the study.

The researchers tested the algorithm on standard brain datasets during the performance of various arm and eye movements. They showed that their algorithm discovered neural patterns in brain signals that directed these movements but were missed with standard algorithms.

They also showed that the decoding of these movements from brain signals – predicting what the movement kinematics are by just looking at brain signals that generate the movement – was much better with their algorithm.

“The algorithm has significant implications for basic science discoveries,” Krim said. “The algorithm can discover shared dynamic patterns between any signals beyond brain signals, which is widely applicable for the military and many other medical and commercial applications.”

Shanechi said the reason for the new algorithm’s success was its ability to consider both brain signals and behavioral signals such as movement kinematics together, and then find the dynamic patterns that were common to these signals.

This decoding also depends on our ability to isolate neural patterns related to the specific behavior. These neural patterns can be masked by patterns related to other activities and can be missed by standard algorithms.

In the future, the new algorithm could also enhance future brain-machine interfaces by decoding behaviors better. For example, the algorithm could help allow paralyzed patients to directly control prosthetics by thinking about the movement.

By U.S. Army DEVCOM Army Research Laboratory Public Affairs

Wearin’ Connected Vest: New Ready-to-Use Wearable Technology for Connected Soldiers

Monday, October 26th, 2020

Fischer Connectors Group, the leader in rugged connectivity solutions for harsh environments, is proud to present its spin-off Wearin’™, the provider of new wearable connectivity solutions.

Wearin’s solutions integrate wearable technology into ergonomically designed gear, helping reduce weight, simplify use and enhance situational awareness.

Easy-to-use, rugged & lightweight, Wearin’ connectivity solutions are suited for the Generic Soldier Architecture (GSA), Soldier Modernization programs and C5ISTAR applications.

At the recent AUSA NOW, Wearin’ unveiled a connected vest designed to meet SWaP (Size, Weight & Power requirements) and enhance soldier mobility, performance and safety.

The Wearin’ connected vest offers a distributed data (USB 2.0) and power bus, eliminating external cables and multiple batteries. Connector receptacles sewn in strategic locations turn the soldier’s vest into a flexible hub delivering power and data.

Communications gear, sensors, cameras, night vision systems, smartphones, tactical computers, GPS devices and other essentials can be fastened with matching plugs built directly into the device.

The new ready-to-use connected vest is Wearin’s Starter Kit, now commercially available. It includes:

• 1x tactical plate & load carrier (vest)

• 1x tactical wearable hub USB 2+ / plug & play with standard wiring integrated within the vest without break-out cables

• 6x Fischer LP360™ cabled receptacles integrated into the vest, i.e. sewn thanks to the new Fischer LP360™ Quick Detach System* including an adapter, a sewing junction, and a retaining ring

• 1x cable with a Fischer LP360™ plug and Fischer UltiMate™ 80* plug (6-pin NATO STANAG 4695 compatible)

• 1x cable with a Fischer LP360™ plug and a USB type A

• 1x Fischer LP360™ LED

• 1x Fischer LP360™ USB 2.0 adapter

Optional applications include the Fischer LP360™ Rugged Flash Drive and the Fischer LP360™ BodyCam*.

* Fischer Connectors’ NEW products commercially available as of September 2020

Wearin’ for Defense & Security. As part of the Fischer Connectors Group, Wearin’ combines the agility of a start-up with the expertise of one of the world’s leading manufacturers of rugged connectivity solutions for harsh environments. With a global network of specialized partners in wearable technology, data management, garment manufacturing and other fields, Wearin’ breaks the silos of product development to help create comprehensive, rugged and reliable military-grade wearable ecosystems.

Army to Host Tactical Assault Kit Virtual Workshop for Industry, Federal Agencies

Thursday, September 24th, 2020

ABERDEEN PROVING GROUND, Md. (Sept. 23, 2020) — The U.S. Army is hosting a virtual workshop to expedite the development and integration of situational awareness tools Sept. 29 – Oct. 2.

The Tactical Assault Kit (TAK) is a map-based software application that enables coordination among thousands of users with features such as a position data, chat, mission planning and shared overlays. It is compatible with Android, Apple iOS and Windows.

The Tactical Assault Kit virtual offsite will offer stakeholders from across the Department of Defense (DoD), federal agencies and industry an opportunity to exchange information and identify critical needs. The event will offer tracks for software development, programmatic updates and training on TAK platforms.

“The intent of these sessions is to learn from issues that may have arisen in the past year, produce innovative capabilities and reduce duplicative efforts,” said Josh Sterling, director of the TAK Product Center at the The Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Cyber, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C5ISR) Center – a component of Army Futures Command’s Combat Capabilities Development Command.

“Any time we can get more feedback and lessons learned, it’s a data point we can use to improve the platform. I think this is a great way to generate cross-team collaboration that will spur both the development cycle and integration as we continue to push and facilitate a more universal type TAK operation.”

As the central software development hub for all TAK efforts, including 15 DoD programs of record, the C5ISR Center’s TAK Product Center provides software updates and testing for an enhanced user experience.

To foster innovation, the TAK Product Center approved the public release of a non-military variant for federal and government agencies – known as the Android Team Awareness Kit-Civilian (ATAK-CIV) application – on Google Play and the open-source Standard ATAK Software Development Kit on

“TAK is an extensible platform, meaning that we give you a baseline and based on your mission requirements you can build on that baseline to bridge capability gaps,” said Mark Roberts, deputy director for the TAK Product Center.

“Anyone who has a job requirement to display point location information – the military, DoD and federal agencies, state and local authorities, firefighters and emergency responders – will benefit from these sessions. This is a great opportunity to give them a peek at what’s being done around the TAK community,” he said.

Registration for the offsite is available at until Sept. 28.

By CCDC C5ISR Center Public Affairs