Starting next month, around one thousand frontline personnel in Afghanistan will begin testing the Soldier Body Unit, a sensor kit for recording the effects of explosions on the human body. While that’s not the most pleasant of subjects, the blast sensors have been rushed out to collect as much data as possible before soldiers head home in 2014. The US Army’s Rapid Equipping Force and the Georgia Tech Research Institute, which developed the sensors, hope to gather info on concussions and traumatic brain injuries to improve aftercare. This will also be used at source to stop super-soldiers heading back out after a concussion and increasing the probability of an even worse injury. Further sensors will be carried on military vehicles, to help measure the effects of IED blasts on passengers. Adding two pounds in extra equipment probably won’t make the Soldier Body Unit too popular, but it’s thought the kit could weigh in at half a pound once it’s been refined.
July 30, 2012