Even using the most detailed sources, studying history often requires a great imagination, so historians can visualize what the past looked and felt like. Now, new computer-assisted data analysis can help them really see it.
In recent years, the U.S. military has been making small strides toward a greener energy standard – the Navy wants to create a green strike group by 2012, while the Air Force has been testing biofuels in its aircraft. But for troops on the ground relying increasingly on electronic devices, solar is the way forward. With that in mind, DARPA has assembled an industry-academic team of photovoltaic leaders to create the next generation of battle-ready solar cells that achieve 20 percent conversion while standing up to harsh combat conditions.
Video gamers and warfighters alike will appreciate this stunning first-person-shooter view of a Dutch marine boarding team taking back a German merchant ship from Somali pirates. It's not hard to imagine many more soldiers of the future equipped with cameras so that commanders can have multiple on-the-ground views of rapid response operations carried out in real-time.
A general in command of U.S. Army training says that a new generation of video-gaming, computer-savvy but less physically fit soldiers will no longer learn how to disembowel an enemy with a bayonet. The passing of the old infantry standby may simply reflect a modern battlefield that has become both more tech-heavy and more tactically complex, according to AP and other news sources.
Military and police higher-ups can now see just how many shots a particular weapon fired during the course of a battle or incident. The Register reports that a new black box device designed for rifles and submachine guns could report on ammo usage and weapon jamming, as well as who shot whom at what time.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.