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Archive for the ‘military’ category: Page 6

Feb 6, 2019

China’s latest quantum radar could help detect stealth planes, missiles

Posted by in categories: military, quantum physics

Circa 2018


China’s quantum radar makes more progress, and China plans to put it high up in the stratosphere, to spy on ballistic missiles and stealth aircraft.

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Feb 6, 2019

Earth’s Magnetic North Pole Has Shifted So Much We’ve Had to Update GPS

Posted by in categories: government, military

Magnetic north is not where it used to be.

Since 2015, the place to which a compass points has been sprinting toward Siberia at a pace of more than 30 miles (48 kilometres) a year. And this week, after a delay caused by the month-long partial government shutdown in the United States, humans have finally caught up.

Scientists on Monday released an emergency update to the World Magnetic Model, which cellphone GPS systems and military navigators use to orient themselves.

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Feb 6, 2019

Here’s the Army’s now-patented EMP rifle attachment for taking out small drones

Posted by in categories: drones, engineering, military

A U.S. Army engineer’s idea to turn the standard M4 rifle into an electromagnetic pulse gun recently got the nod from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.

James E. Burke, electronics engineer at the U.S. Army’s Armament Research, Development and Engineering Center, received U.S. patent 10,180,309 on Tuesday, giving the Army intellectual property protections on Burke’s “Electromagnetic Pulse Transmitter Muzzle Adapter.”

This invention would enable a single soldier in a ground unit to destroy enemy electronics, such as small drones or improvised explosive devices, by attaching a special blank-firing adapter to their rifle’s muzzle, then firing a shot.

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Feb 6, 2019

A physicist says blowing up nuclear weapons in the ocean to trigger tsunamis ‘would be completely stupid’

Posted by in category: military

British tabloids recently suggested nuclear weapons could trigger killer waves, but science is not on the side of this idea.

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Feb 6, 2019

The Pentagon’s Wall-of-Light Laser Shield

Posted by in category: military

Circa 2015


The Plasma Acoustic Shield System (PASS) is a crackling, flashing wall of light hanging in the air up to 100 meters away. And while it’s the stuff of sci-fi, the laser-powered PASS already exists in prototype form, built by Stellar Photonics of Redmond, Wash., with funding from the Pentagon’s Joint Nonlethal Weapons Directorate (JNLWD).

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Feb 6, 2019

Space-based laser weapons could ultimately take out missile threats in boost phase

Posted by in categories: military, space

Pentagon officials are trying to anticipate where boost-phase missile defense technology development is headed. (imaginima/Getty Images)

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Feb 5, 2019

China is developing a new laser satellite meant to hunt down submarines more than 1,600 feet underwater

Posted by in categories: military, surveillance

China is developing a satellite with a powerful laser for anti-submarine warfare that researchers hope will be able to pinpoint a target as far as 500 metres below the surface.

It is the latest addition to the country’s expanding deep-sea surveillance programme, and aside from targeting submarines — most operate at a depth of less than 500 metres — it could also be used to collect data on the world’s oceans.

Project Guanlan, meaning “watching the big waves”, was officially launched in May at the Pilot National Laboratory for Marine Science and Technology in Qingdao, Shandong. It aims to strengthen China’s surveillance activities in the world’s oceans, according to the laboratory’s website.

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Feb 5, 2019

Russian media threatens US with 100 megaton nuclear doomsday device after key arms treaty fails

Posted by in categories: existential risks, geopolitics, military, treaties

With the dropping of the INF treaty, Putin and Trump have brought the dangers of nuclear war back into a more realistic possibility. I’m not posting this to engage in a political discussion but nuclear war is definitely a lifeboat type of issue.


Russia’s military and state-sponsored media have reacted with a fire and fury of their own to the news that the US will exit the Intermediate Nuclear Forces treaties, one of the last barriers to a full-on Cold War-like arms race in Europe — and there’s already talk of a nuclear doomsday device visiting the US.

The INF treaty banned land-based nuclear capable missiles with a range between 300 and 3,200 miles in 1987 when Russia and the US had populated much of Europe with intermediate-ranged nuclear missiles. The ban eliminated this entire class of missiles and went down as one of the most successful acts of arms control ever.

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Feb 5, 2019

The Air Force’s ‘rods from god’ could hit with the force of a nuclear weapon — with no fallout

Posted by in categories: biological, geopolitics, military, treaties

The 107-country Outer Space Treaty signed in 1967 prohibits nuclear, biological, or chemical weapons from being placed in or used from Earth’s orbit.

What they didn’t count on was the US Air Force’s most simple weapon ever: a tungsten rod that could hit a city with the explosive power of an intercontinental ballistic missile.

During the Vietnam War, the US used what it called “Lazy Dog” bombs. These were simply solid-steel pieces, less than 2 inches long, fitted with fins.

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Feb 5, 2019

Biotechnology and Human Augmentation

Posted by in categories: biotech/medical, military, robotics/AI

Over the last decade, military theorists and authors in the fields of future warfare and strategy have examined in detail the potential impacts of an ongoing revolution in information technology. There has been a particular focus on the impacts of automation and artificial intelligence on military and national security affairs. This attention on silicon-based disruption has nonetheless meant that sufficient attention may not have been paid to other equally profound technological developments. One of those developments is the field of biotechnology.

There have been some breathtaking achievements in the biological realm over the last decade. Human genome sequencing has progressed from a multi-year and multi-billion dollar undertaking to a much cheaper and quicker process, far outstripping Moore’s Law. Just as those concerned with national security affairs must monitor disruptive silicon-based technologies, leaders must also be literate in the key biological issues likely to impact the future security of nations. One of the most significant matters in biotechnology is that of human augmentation and whether nations should augment military personnel to stay at the leading edge of capability.

Military institutions will continue to seek competitive advantage over potential adversaries. While this is most obvious in the procurement of advanced platforms, human biotechnological advancement is gaining more attention. As a 2017 CSIS report on the Third Offset found most new technological advances will provide only a temporary advantage, assessed to be no more than five years. In this environment, some military institutions may view the newer field of human augmentation as a more significant source of a future competitive edge.

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