Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Tunnels and Drones: Subterranean Battles

Hollywood loves staging fights in tunnels: they’re dark and creepy, and you never know when an alien will pop out or a surprise torrential flood will bear down on the hero.  The military, not so much, but they may not have a choice in the future.  Modern battlefields might consist of subway and water systems, or defensive tunnels, and for that reason the Army wants a portable way for soldiers to map remote tunnel systems using ground robot or drones.  Specifically, it wants a device that provides 2D or 3D maps, which must be seen immediately as the device moves through a tunnel.  The Pentagon’s Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency is also conducting a multi-year challenge to provide tech to map, navigate, and search underground terrain.


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