Forget an Apple iWatch, the U.S. military is the one really taking wearable technology to new levels.
Different divisions of the U.S. armed forces, as well as other government agencies such as Darpa, are all working on developing high-tech armor that will help not only provide soldiers with full-body ballistic protection, but will also give them superhuman-like capabilities.
Think enhanced vision, increased upper body strength, improved speed and even amplified situational awareness.
Some of the technology that the soldier of the future may wear could include advanced sensors, that can respond to brain functions; smart fabrics that could provide hemorrhage control; and a heads-up display that could provide real-time battlefield data. An exoskeleton that enhances physical performance—and also captures kinetic energy to power the soldier’s attire—could also be part of the future uniform.
Although this might sound like something straight out of a scene from a science fiction movie, it’s actually not that far off from becoming a reality.
The U.S. military is currently working on a system called the Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit (TALOS)—which is aimed at providing greater ballistic coverage as well as increased strength—for Special Operations troops.
“The next 20 years are going to be transformational years,” said Michael Fieldson, the program manager for TALOS.
The first TALOS prototype is expected to be delivered in June, and a fully functional version is expected to roll out to U.S. Commandos by 2018.