The Homeland Defense (HD) Digest is a curated bi-weekly news summary from worldwide sources, showing headlines of innovative, emerging technologies in HDIAC's eight focus areas.
Join HDIAC Thursday, August 13, from 1100 to 1200 EDT for our next webinar presentation. Please register in advance for the webinar using the Anymeeting link provided. The Defense Science Board has identified energy as one of the main enablers of future military operations and has noted that military energy usage could grow significantly in the near future, outpacing improvements to alternative energy sources. In March of 2020, the Pentagon issued several contracts to facilitate a design work "competition" for mobile, small nuclear reactors and the winning prototype will potentially be forward deployed with forces outside the United States. The project is managed through the Strategic Capabilities Office's "Project Pele" which was formed to ensure the safe development of mobile and advanced nuclear microreactors for a variety of DoD missions. Desired features for the new reactors include quick set-up, shut-down, and the ability to facilitate rapid movement by road, sea, air, or train. This prototyping project will ensure that critical functions remain operational regardless of the status of the local power grid and allow users to combat physical or cyber espionage from weak grids.
NRL Researcher Optically Measures Aerosol Particles Smaller Than a Wavelength of Light in Real Time - U.S. Naval Research Lab.
A research physicist at the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory invented a new method to create and optically measure gases with particles smaller than a wavelength of light.
Missile Defense Becomes Part of Great Power Competition - Defense.org
All aspects of the military are engaged in great power competition, but while most analysts focus on developments in offensive missiles, Chinese and Russian defense leaders are developing even more capable missile defenses, Defense Department officials said.
Turning Carbon Dioxide Into Liquid Fuel - Science Daily
Catalysts speed up chemical reactions and form the backbone of many industrial processes. For example, they are essential in transforming heavy oil into gasoline or jet fuel. Today, catalysts are involved in over 80 percent of all manufactured products.
Military leaders have been warning of the fragility of GPS for years and researchers have been working on a variety of solutions, from quantum clocks to inertial navigation. The Air Force is adding a new one, using the earth's magnetic fields as a secure way to detect location for aircraft and possibly other vehicles.
HMP&L Signs PPA for 50 MW of Solar Power Capacity in Kentucky - Renewable Energy World
This week, solar developer Community Energy announced that Henderson Municipal Power & Light (HMP&L) will be the offtaker of a 50-MW new solar facility in Kentucky. Through a 20-year Power Purchase Agreement (PPA), HMP&L will purchase 100% of the output of the new solar farm developed by Community Energy. Located in Henderson County, the facility is expected to produce 117 million kWh of solar energy annually starting in 2023, fulfilling 20% of HMP&L's electricity demand.
One of the most dangerous effects of coronavirus is the inability to breathe on your own-requiring the help of a ventilator to push air through your lungs.
A biological threat agent explodes out of a metal tube and travels toward a formation of warfighters. Thousands of aerosolized agents speed through the air. While some agents infect warfighters, others remain in transport or slam into rocks, trees, and the ground. Aerosolized agents that linger in the open-air environment, before decontamination efforts begin or even during that time when they are in transport, will age and decay. Until recently, because of challenges posed by outdoor testing of live biological threat agents, scientists empirically assumed that agents aged and decayed at similar rates indoors and outdoors. Yet laboratory measurements may not accurately predict - and even underestimate - the decomposition of agents released in the open air.
An Army-funded project developed a self-healing material patterned after squid ring teeth protein. The biodegradable biosynthetic polymer could be used to repair materials that are under continual repetitive movement such as robotic machines, prosthetic legs, ventilators and personal protective equipment like hazmat suits.
No Laughing Matter: Laughter Signature as New Biometrics - Homeland Security News Wire
The popular view of biometric security often invokes fingerprint readers, iris or retinal scans, and voice-activated systems. Researchers have now demonstrated how the way a person laughs might be used in biometrics. Initial tests of the approach show that a prototype laughter recognition algorithm can be 90 percent accurate.
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