2014 Paris Motor Show highlights

Military

Artist's concept of the Ground Systems FANG vehicle

The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) announced on Monday the winner of the first challenges in its competition to design the Fast Adaptable Next-Generation Ground Vehicle (FANG). The US$1 million prize went to “Ground Systems” – a three-person group with members in Ohio, Texas and California. The first of three challenges, the purpose of the competition is to bring crowdsourcing to the problem of creating armored vehicles, with the hope of reducing the design costs by a factor of five.  Read More

Northrop Grumman's CUTLASS UGV is designed to provide remote handling and surveillance of ...

The arrest of one of the Boston Marathon bombing suspects was carried out, in part, with the help of a remote controlled robot. Such an operation highlights the growing uses of unmanned ground vehicles (UGV) in anti-terrorist and other operations. Northrop Grumman Corporation’s CUTLASS robot, developed by its division in Coventry, U.K. is designed to provide remote handling and surveillance of hazardous threats and is intended to replace British Army’s Wheelbarrow robot for bomb disposal.  Read More

Laser Weapon System (LaWS) temporarily installed aboard the guided-missile destroyer USS D...

The U.S. Navy took a step farther away from John Paul Jones and closer to James T. Kirk as it announced that a solid-state laser weapon will be deployed on a U.S. Navy ship in fiscal year 2014. The announcement that the Laser Weapon System (LaWS) will deployed on board USS Ponce (AFSB[I] 15) two years ahead of schedule was made on Monday at the Sea-Air-Space exposition, National Harbor, Maryland. The deployment is the latest in a line of recent recent high-energy laser demonstrations carried out by the Office of Naval Research (ONR) and Naval Sea Systems Command.  Read More

Raytheon's 3D Audio system presenting a threat warning

Pilots need sharp eyes, but Raytheon is looking to their ears as well. The company has developed a new 3D Audio system for aircraft, that turns information into an audible three-dimensional picture. It helps pilots identify where threats are coming from, and keeps radio channels untangled.  Read More

Paratroopers in T-11 parachutes and teh IOTV armored vest

If any soldier needs body armor, its a paratrooper making a parachute drop. Unfortunately, standard body armor is too inflexible for paratroopers to use without the risk of being injured upon landing, but the US Army’s Airborne and Special Operations Test Directorate hopes to rectify this, conducting test jumps with both the latest parachutes and body armor.  Read More

The Lockheed Martin Miniature Hit-to-Kill interceptor roaring off the launcher (Photo: Loc...

The U.S. Army is funding Lockheed Martin to develop hardware and software for the Extended Area Protection and Survivability (EAPS) program. Under this program, Lockheed Martin has conducted the first guided test flight of the Miniature Hit-to-Kill (MHTK) interceptor rocket. The MHTK is designed to defeat incoming rocket, artillery, and mortar fire out to ranges of 3 - 4 km (1.9 - 2.5 miles).  Read More

Boeing B-52 Stratofortress (Image: USAF)

Last week, the United States Air Force’s 2nd Bomb Wing made its first live run with a new Lockheed Martin Sniper pod installed on the wing of a B-52H Stratofortress. Taking off from Barksdale Air Force Base, Louisiana, the practice run introduces new combat abilities that will give the aging bomber better integration with ground forces and laser-guided bombs for precision strikes.  Read More

BAE Systems' Artisan 3D Medium Range Radar Type 997

If you've ever worried about the threat from supersonic tennis balls, then BAE Systems’ Artisan medium-range Type 997 3D surveillance radar should put you at ease – it can detect one traveling at Mach 3 (1,980 mph, 3,186 km/h) at a distance of 25 kilometers (15.5 mi). The new radar, developed for the Royal Navy’s Type 23 Duke-class frigates, is designed to simultaneously detect 900 targets smaller than a bird, against background noise equivalent to 10,000 mobile phone signals at ranges from 200 meters (656 ft) to 200 kilometers (124 mi).  Read More

Rheinmetall's Gladius soldier system is billed as most advanced system of its kind

The Rheinmetall Group has been awarded an €84 million (US$112 million) contract to supply a further sixty of its modular Gladius "future soldier" systems to the German Federal Defense Force.  Read More

First flight of the Northrop Grumman LEMV airship (Photo: Northrop Grumman)

When Northrop Grumman announced that it was building the Long Endurance Multi-Intelligence Vehicle (LEMV), it looked as if the age of the great airships was returning. When the LEMV took to the air in its maiden flight, it seemed a certainty. Now, the US Army has announced that the US$517 million program has been cancelled.  Read More

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