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Archive for the ‘military’ category

Nov 12, 2020

Tesla loves Veterans: Here’s how the company has honored military heroes

Posted by in categories: military, sustainability

On this Veteran’s Day 2020, Teslarati thanks all of the heroes who have sacrificed their freedoms to protect ours. In the theme of the day, we decided to take a look back at how Tesla has honored the heroes who have served in the military over the years. From camo-inspired EVs to Veteran’s hiring programs, the electric automaker has portrayed an appreciation for those who fought to keep us free.

2014: The Camo Model S and a heartfelt “Thank You”

In 2014, Tesla tweeted several photographs of a military-inspired Model S, dawning images of American flags and spelling the words “U.S.A. Veteran,” “Made in the USA,” and “#TeslaVets.” The camo Model S hasn’t made an appearance since then. However, the message is still present on Tesla’s official Twitter page, reminding everyone that the company is overwhelmingly supportive of our Veterans.

Nov 12, 2020

‘Robot soldiers could make up quarter of British army

Posted by in categories: finance, government, military, robotics/AI

“I mean, I suspect we could have an army of 120,000, of which 30,000 might be robots, who knows?” Carter said, although he stressed he was not setting any particular target in terms of future numbers.

Investment in robot warfare was to be at the heart of the planned integrated five-year defence review, whose future was thrown into doubt after the chancellor, Rishi Sunak, postponed the cross-government spending review to which it had been linked last month.

Carter said negotiations with Downing Street and the Treasury about salvaging the multi-year defence funding settlement were “going on in a very constructive way” – as he lobbied in public for a long-term financial deal.

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Nov 11, 2020

DARPA Selects Teams to Modify Skin Microbiome for Disease Prevention

Posted by in categories: bioengineering, biotech/medical, health, military

ReVector researchers have expertise in synthetic biology, human microbiome, and mosquito studies.


The American Society for Microbiology estimates that there are trillions of microbes living in or on the human body that constitute the human microbiome1. The human skin microbiome (HSM) acts as a barrier between humans and our external environment, protecting us from infection, but also potentially producing molecules that attract mosquitos. Mosquitos are of particular concern to the Department of Defense, as they transmit pathogens that cause diseases such as chikungunya, Zika, dengue, West Nile virus, yellow fever, and malaria. The ReVector program aims to maintain the health of military personnel operating in disease-endemic regions by reducing attraction and feeding by mosquitos, and limiting exposure to mosquito-transmitted diseases.

Genome engineering has progressed to the point where editing the HSM to remove the molecules that attract mosquitos or add genes that produce mild mosquito repellants are now possible. While the skin microbiome has naturally evolved to modulate our interactions with the environment and organisms that surround us, exerting precise control over our microbiomes is an exciting new way to provide protection from mosquito-borne diseases.

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Nov 11, 2020

DARPA Selects Teams to Further Advance Dogfighting Algorithms

Posted by in categories: information science, military, robotics/AI

DARPA recently awarded contracts to five companies to develop algorithms enabling mixed teams of manned and unmanned combat aircraft to conduct aerial dogfighting autonomously.

Boeing, EpiSci, Georgia Tech Research Institute, Heron Systems, and physicsAI were chosen to develop air combat maneuvering algorithms for individual and team tactical behaviors under Technical Area (TA) 1 of DARPA’s Air Combat Evolution (ACE) program. Each team is tasked with developing artificial intelligence agents that expand one-on-one engagements to two-on-one and two-on-two within-visual-range aerial battles. The companies’ algorithms will be tested in each of three program phases: modeling and simulation, sub-scale unmanned aircraft, and full-scale combat representative aircraft scheduled in 2023.

“The TA1 performers include a large defense contractor, a university research institute, and boutique AI firms, who will build upon the first-gen autonomous dogfighting algorithms demonstrated in the AlphaDogfight Trials this past August,” said Air Force Col. Dan “Animal” Javorsek, program manager in DARPA’s Strategic Technology Office. “We will be evaluating how well each performer is able to advance their algorithms to handle individual and team tactical aircraft behaviors, in addition to how well they are able to scale the capability from a local within-visual-range environment to the broader, more complex battlespace.”

Nov 11, 2020

The Air Force Is Putting Death Rays on Fighter Jets. Yes, Death Rays

Posted by in categories: finance, military

The U.S. Air Force envisions placing laser weapon systems on fighter jets by the mid-2020s. The service is banking on a defense contractor’s SHiELD laser system, a pod-mounted laser that will protect fighters from incoming missiles.

✈ You love badass planes. So do we. Let’s nerd out over them together.

Nov 10, 2020

Kosta Tsipis, MIT physicist and prominent voice for nuclear disarmament, dies at 86

Posted by in categories: existential risks, military, nuclear weapons, physics, treaties

In arguing against nuclear war, Dr. Tsipis said he came « to believe that reason must prevail. »


A curious boy who gazed at the stars from his mountainside Greek village and wondered how the universe came to be, Kosta Tsipis was only 11 when news arrived that the first atomic weapon had been dropped on Hiroshima, Japan.

“After the bomb went off, I sent away for a book because I wanted to understand it,” he told the Globe in 1987.

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Nov 10, 2020

Four Quick Stories on Press Freedoms and Venture Funding: Age of Ingenuity

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, government, military

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Sources cited in this episode include the following:

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Nov 9, 2020

SpaceX gets $29 million Space Force contract for surveillance of non-military launches

Posted by in categories: military, space, surveillance

WASHINGTON — SpaceX was awarded a $29.6 million contract under the National Security Space Launch Phase 2 contract that allows the U.S. Space Force to monitor and study data from the company’s commercial and civil space missions.

The one-year contract “provides early integration studies and fleet surveillance for non-national security space missions,” said the Space Force contract announcement Nov. 9.

Fleet surveillance includes access to proprietary “tools, systems, processes and launch site activities developed by the launch service provider for non-national security space missions,” said the Space Force.

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Nov 9, 2020

L3Harris wins contract to apply artificial intelligence to remotely sensed data

Posted by in categories: business, military, robotics/AI

SAN FRANCISCO – L3Harris Technologies will help the U.S. Defense Department extract information and insight from satellite and airborne imagery under a three-year U.S. Army Research Laboratory contract.

L3Harris will develop and demonstrate an artificial intelligence-machine learning interface for Defense Department applications under the multimillion-dollar contract announced Oct. 26.

“L3Harris will assist the Department of Defense with the integration of artificial intelligence and machine learning capabilities and technologies,” Stacey Casella, general manager for L3Harris’ Geospatial Processing and Analytics business, told SpaceNews. L3Harris will help the Defense Department embed artificial intelligence and machine learning in its workflows “to ultimately accelerate our ability to extract usable intelligence from the pretty expansive set of remotely sensed data that we have available today from spaceborne and airborne assets,” she added.

Nov 9, 2020

X-43A (Hyper-X)

Posted by in categories: military, space

Four decades of supersonic-combustion ramjet propulsion research culminated in a successful flight of the X-43A hypersonic technology demonstrator in March 2004, the first time a scramjet-powered aircraft had flown freely. After being launched by Dryden’s venerable B-52B mothership off the coast of Southern California, a modified first-stage Pegasus booster rocketed the X-43A to 95,000 feet before the X-43A separated and flew under its own scramjet power at an airspeed of Mach 6.8, or about 5,000 mph, for about 11 seconds. On Nov. 16, another identical scramjet-powered X-43A did it again, this time reaching hypersonic speeds above Mach 9.6, or about 6,800 mph, in the final flight of the X-43A project. Both flights set world airspeed records for an aircraft powered by an air-breathing engine, and proved that scramjet propulsion is a viable technology for powering future space-access vehicles and hypersonic aircraft.

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