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Selective, Sensitive, and Robust Electrochemical Detection of Anthrax

There exists an unmet need for rapid, sensitive, and field-stable assays for pathogen detection. Bacillus anthracis is the causative agent of anthrax poisoning. This Gram-positive bacterium secretes a tripartite toxin including a cell-binding protective antigen (PA), and the delivered toxins edema factor (EF) and lethal factor (LF). Anthrax poisoning has high mortality and, when delivered in the form of B. anthracis spores, has a very high environmental stability.

Posted in: Briefs, Defense, Sensors, Biohazards
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Talking Drone Converses With Air Traffic Controllers

Researchers have developed and demonstrated an autonomous capability that would allow a drone to verbally interact with air traffic controllers. The development is a critical step towards the full integration of unmanned aircraft systems – or drones – into civil airspace. Drones need to be able to fly safely alongside other airspace users without causing disruption to air traffic management.

The majority of air traffic control services are provided to aircraft by voice radio – aircraft controllers speaking directly to pilots. Using the new system, an air traffic controller can talk to, and receive responses from, a drone just like they would with any other aircraft.

The project brings the safe and seamless operation of UAVs within civil airspace one step closer. The new system enables a drone to respond to information requests and act on clearances issued by an air traffic controller.

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Posted in: News, Defense
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Researchers Develop New Maritime Target Detection System

SPAWAR Systems Center Pacific has developed RAPIER® full motion video (FMV), a maritime target detection, tracking, and identification solution that quickly and automatically analyzes video, alerts analysts of important targets, and outputs target information.

Posted in: News, Defense
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DOD-funded Technology Lets Muscles Control Prosthetic Hand

After years of intense research and support from Defense Department agencies and a private foundation, a Marine who lost his right hand in Afghanistan is testing new technology that could change everything in the years ahead for someone who loses a limb. The implantable myoelectric sensor system, or IMES, was developed by the California-based Alfred E. Mann Foundation. Now in clinical trials for Food and Drug Administration approval, thanks to 31-year- old Marine Corps Staff Sgt. James Sides, the system lets a patient with sensors, or electrodes, implanted into forearm muscles intuitively control the movements of a prosthetic hand.

Posted in: News, Defense
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New Devices Could Help Soldiers Detect Chemicals and Bio Threats

Researchers are refining for Army use a commercial technology that will allow soldiers to accurately and rapidly detect an array of chemical and biological hazards - from mustard agent to anthrax - and then transmit those results to their higher command. At the same time, the technology is smart enough to differentiate between those chemicals which are dangerous and those that a soldier has carried with him into the environment on his own skin, such as bug spray or hand sanitizer.

Posted in: Articles, Defense, Detectors
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UAVs to Play Critical Role in Precision Agriculture

Researchers are investigating how unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) can be used commercially in agriculture. Their size, cost and capabilities make UAVs useful for a wide range of jobs. Mississippi State University researchers are already using these vehicles, and many others are examining their potential applications, including flying a camera on a drone to get instant aerial views of research fields.

A flyover could identify problem spots in extremely large fields, and then researchers, crop consultants, or farmers could go to the identified areas and examine them carefully to make proper diagnoses. The information gathered by soil-moisture sensors could be compared to the information that could be gathered by drones.

Technology already exists to allow producers to make very specific chemical applications to their fields with farm equipment. UAVs can help them target these applications even more precisely.

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Posted in: News, News, Aerospace, Aviation, Defense
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Mini Models Fire Up to Test Space Launch System

NASA is working with CUBRC Inc. of Buffalo, NY to design, build, and test 2% scale models of the Space Launch System (SLS) propulsion system. Models include two five-segment solid rocket boosters and four core stage RS-25 engines, and a 2% scale model of the entire rocket. The models are fired for short durations of about 50-150 milliseconds per test.

Posted in: News, News, Aerospace, Defense
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Propulsion Technology Could Combat Flight Pollution

A breakthrough propulsion technology to provide greener air transport could be developed after the underlying engineering was declared a success. Six universities and two research organizations from across the EU demonstrated the scientific feasibility of a novel propulsion method that overcomes the main limitations of traditional systems related to jet deflection exhausts.

Posted in: News, News, Defense
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Army Equips Stryker Unit With New Communications Technology

The Army's Stryker vehicle, designed to quickly move soldiers into a combat zone, is swift and mobile. Now its communications equipment will be, too.

Posted in: News, Communications, Wireless, Defense, RF & Microwave Electronics
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Smaller Lidars Could Let UAVs Conduct Underwater Scans

Bathymetric lidars – devices that employ powerful lasers to scan beneath the water's surface – are frequently used to map coastal waters. At nearly 600 pounds, the systems are large, heavy, and require costly, piloted aircraft to carry them. But a team at the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI) has designed a new approach that could lead to bathymetric lidars that are much smaller and more efficient than the current full-size systems. The new technology, developed under the Active Electro-Optical Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (AEO-ISR) project, would let modest-sized unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) carry bathymetric lidars.

Posted in: News, Defense
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