The September Popular Science feature "Shock to the System" (on newsstands next week), discusses the hidden danger of brain trauma faced by soldiers exposed to bomb blasts. The article reveals that one in five American soldiers serving in Iraq may be suffering from a brain injury—not from direct contact with explosions, but from the effects of bomb blast waves that can cause life-threatening damage at the cellular level, even from distances previously considered safe.
Since press time, however, a new innovation has surfaced that might speed the diagnosis and treatment of concussions in the field.
University of Pennsylvania professor Shu Yang has developed a color-changing crystal film that may serve as an indicator of the severity of shockwaves. The mesh-like molecular structure of the crystal shifts in response to blasts, causing the surface of the film to change color.
"Depending on the damage, you'll have different color intensities," Professor Yang told the BBC. "Based on that information we can extract how much force the soldier has received."
This information could be lifesaving, since brain trauma from bomb blasts is often slow to manifest symptomatically, and may not be visible on MRI scans.
While more research needs to be done to correlate the shifts in color with the amount of neurological damage a soldier may have incurred, the technology seems promising. If all goes according to plan, the color crystals will be worm as badges on military uniforms. In the event of a severe blast, a warning color will provide an instant visual alert that a soldier should be examined for possible brain injury.
It is terribly sad that the majority of military based nations believe that they need the most powerful military possible in order to minimize or totally prevent the unwanted aggression seemingly always available from another military based nation. Violence begets violence but is very necessary for all military systems no matter if those who are involved are exposed to the unwanted damages such as those highlighted in the "Shock to the System" article.
Well, as found in the book "True Freedom - The Road to the First Real Democracy" there actually is far better alternative to the national defense systems for most nations. Not only can the need for the military types mostly used today be eliminated the national defense for the nations which want to participate can be improved and at a far lower cost. Just think, the U.S.A. could actually eliminate the personnel damages and their related fighting costs created by having so many human animals go off to fight and the nation be far more secure at the same time.
Take a look at the Military Defense System laid out in this book and you will learn that there actually is a far better approach in dealing with a nation's national defense, both when it comes to having the best defense system possible and at a far lower cost than the all of the past and present national defense systems.
David M. Gage
Author of "True Freedom - The Road to the First Real Democracy" found on the website www.truefreedom.tv
look, Mr. Gage, don't blame the world's problems on the soldiers, or military technology, espescialy technology that can save lives, military and civilian -- blame it on the politicians.
secondly, sometimes violence is neccessary. and there are some leaders so heinous, so power thirsty, so arrogant-- that talking dosen't work.
here's a list:
1. king George III (revolutionary war)
2. Kaiser Wilhelm
3. Adolf Hitler
4. general Tojo (japan, world war II)
5. Saddam Hussein
6. O Sama Bin Laden
I am glad that the military is taking this seriously, and trying to find ways to detect and treat injured soldiers. My husband was injured in 2005, while working as a police bomb tech, and it has been a grueling ongoing battle to get the appropriate diagnosis and treatment from the civilian medical community.
Because converging, reflected blast waves can have much higher spot pressures, there are still weaknesses in the theory of the mood ring patches, but at least this is a start.