The ideal tunnel mapping system will "be able to operate in GPS denied environment" and produce a 2D or 3D map, according to the RFI. It should be "rapidly deployable, easy and safe to operate ... highly reliable and self-contained." It should be able to be mounted on an unmanned ground or aerial vehicle, or be carried by soldiers.
This ask comes as the Army recently poured millions into training and preparing for subterranean warfare. As Military Times — who got a first-hand look at the Army's preparation for underground battle — points out, "[m]inor nods to underground training" at Army and Marine Corps training centers is not new, but "[s]erious manning, equipping, funding and training across the force has been lacking."
In a February interview with Military Times, retired Army Maj. John Spencer detailed number of wishlist items he'd like to see used in an underground fight, including ground-penetrating radar, foam grenades, and a "guardian robot dog" that performs the same functions as loitering UAVs do above ground.
And it's not just the Army — the Marine Corps and Air Force are tacking the challenges subterranean warfare pose as well. Recently, the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), which launched a Subterranean Challenge, which aims to "explore new approaches to rapidly map, navigate, search and exploit complex underground environments," and "ensure that our warfighters and first responders are equipped with the technologies and capabilities they need."
The development of technologies for subterranean environments will also benefit the civilian world, according to Dr. Ethan Stump of the Army's Combat Capabilities Development Command's Army Research Laboratory.
"Subterranean environments are a fantastic domain for trying to understand the extreme limits of what can be done with autonomy," Stump said. "[I]t is important to understand exactly what parts of a complex mission you need human input for and what parts can be safely and reliably delegated to autonomy. This understanding has implications for many military and civilian applications, such as interplanetary science and underwater exploration."
An E-2D Hawkeye assigned to the Bluetails of Carrier Airborne Early Warning Squadron (VAW) 121 lands on the flight deck aboard the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN 72). (U.S. Navy/Mass Communication Specialist Seaman Will Hardy)
Nobody can be told what The Matrix is; you have to see it for yourself.
More than two decades after The Matrix showed the world what the future of the sci-fi action flick could look like, Warner Bros. Pictures plans on producing a fourth installment of the groundbreaking epic saga, Variety first reported on Tuesday.
Sailors from Coastal Riverine Squadron (CRS) 1 conduct category III qualifications on the M2A1 heavy machine gun at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif. CRS-1 is qualifying for future mobilization requirements. (U.S. Navy/Hospital Corpsman 1st Class Kenji Shiroma)
The Navy is considering giving Ma Deuce a quiet new update.
A competitor performs push-ups during the physical fitness event at the Minnesota Army National Guard Best Warrior Competition on April 4, 2019, at Camp Ripley, Minnesota. (Minnesota National Guard photo by Sgt. Sebastian Nemec)
Despite what you may have heard, the Army has not declared war on mustaches.
The Army W.T.F! Moments Facebook page on Monday posted a memo written by a 3rd Infantry Division company commander telling his soldiers that only the fittest among them will be allowed to sprout facial hair under their warrior nostrils.
"During my tenure at Battle Company, I have noticed a direct correlation between mustaches and a lack of physical fitness," the memo says. "In an effort to increase the physical fitness of Battle Company, mustaches will not be authorized for any soldier earning less than a 300 on the APFT [Army Physical Fitness Test]."