Fake news backlash? Twitter CEO rethinking how platform works, wants to reduce ‘echo chambers’

Twitter chief executive Jack Dorsey said he is rethinking core parts of the social media network so that it does not enable the spread of hate speech and disinformation.

In an interview on Wednesday with the Washington Post, Dorsey said his company is testing features that would help promote alternative points of view as a way to combat fake news and reduce “echo chambers.”

“The most important thing that we can do is we look at the incentives that we’re building into our product,” Dorsey told the Post. “Because they do express a point of view of what we want people to do—and I don’t think they are correct anymore.”

Dorsey, along with other Silicon Valley executives like Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, has grappled with how to reconcile his company’s mission and free-speech ethos with the increasingly virulent hate speech and fake news that have infiltrated his platform.

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In the face of intense backlash, Zuckerbergannounced a wave of changes at Facebook, including a top-to-bottom review of all the apps that utilize the social network and a massive hiring spree to thwart hate speech and misinformation.

In recent weeks, Dorsey has come under fire for saying that conspiracy theorist and Infowarshost Alex Jones was not in violation of its policies. Dorsey came under more fire for these comments, which caused him to backtrack. Twitter suspended most of Jones’ account activity for a seven-day period after Jones encouraged his followers in a video posted to Twitter to get their “battle rifles” ready against critics in the mainstream media and on the left.

Dorsey said in the Post interview that Twitter has not changed its incentives, which like most social platforms are designed to push interaction and keep users engaged consistently, since it was founded. “We often turn to policy to fix a lot of these issues, but I think that is only treating surface-level symptoms that we are seeing,” he said.

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA - APRIL 13: (EUROPE AND AUSTRALASIA OUT) Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey poses during a photo shoot in Sydney, New South Wales. (Photo by Jack Dorsey/Newspix/Getty Images)

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey said the company is open to a range of changes in the platform’s structure. (Getty Images)

Twitter is exploring the possibility of surrounding false tweets with factual content, the CEO told the Post. More context about a tweet, including “tweets that call it out as obviously fake,” could help users make their own judgments, Dorsey added.

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The microblogging platform might also one day label all automated accounts, including businesses that use them to send out information about the weather or stocks.

Meanwhile, some users are taking matters into their own hands when it comes to efforts to get Jones off of the platform for good.

This week, the Grab Your Wallet founder Shannon Coulter had a viral Twitter thread suggesting that users could get Jones banned by blocking a list of all the Fortune 500 Twitter handles. She organized the Twitter handles of the Fortune 500, then made them available as a collective block list.

Any user could install the block list with a couple of clicks, and if they have done so, ads from those companies would not appear in their Twitter timelines. According to her, over 50,000 people installed the tool as of Wednesday.

Twitter has continued to take heat from people on the left who say it enables neo-Nazis and conspiracy theorists and those on the right who claim is is biased against them.

Dorsey is one of several technology leaders that will be grilled during a Senate hearing in September on Russian efforts to destability U.S. democracy ahead of the midterm elections.

AI tool ‘as good as experts’ at detecting eye problems, scientists say

Scientists say a new machine-learning system is as good as the smartest human experts at detecting eye problems and making referrals for treatments.

The groundbreaking artificial intelligence system, developed by the AI-outfit DeepMind, was able to correctly refer patients with more than 50 different eye diseases.

“The results of this pioneering research with DeepMind are very exciting and demonstrate the potential sight-saving impact AI could have for patients,” Prof Sir Peng Tee Khaw, the director of the NIHR Biomedical Research Centre at Moorfields eye hospital and the UCL Institute of Ophthalmology in the U.K., told the Guardian.

The two-stage AI system takes a more human-like approach to analyzing patients’optical coherence tomography(OCT) scans of their retinas. The tests commonly divide patients into four clinical categories: urgent, semi-urgent, routine and observation only.

According to research published in the journal Nature Medicine, different machine-learning systems, trained on OCT scans, create maps of the scans. Those maps are then analyzed by a second group of machine-learning systems, which were trained on maps from 14,884 OCT scans, which interpret those maps and give a referral decision.

The decisions are combined into one result. Any unique or borderline results can be shown to a doctor for their own interpretation of the referral.

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“The number of eye scans we’re performing is growing at a pace much faster than human experts are able to interpret them,” Dr. Pearse Keane, a consultant ophthalmologist at Moorfields eye hospital, told the Guardian.

“The AI technology we’re developing is designed to prioritise patients who need to be seen and treated urgently by a doctor or eye care professional. If we can diagnose and treat eye conditions early, it gives us the best chance of saving people’s sight,” Keane added.

The AI system will next be put through clinical trials to see if it can be used in a more widespread way. The sytem could also be used to help train doctors.

Robert Dufton, the chief executive at Moorfields Eye Charity, said: “The need for treatment for eye diseases is forecast to grow, in part because people are living longer, far beyond our ability to meet the demand using current practice.

“Artificial intelligence is showing the potential to transform the speed at which diseases can be diagnosed and treatments suggested, making the best use of the limited time of clinicians.”

US Army eyes microwave cannon to take out drones

The U.S. Army wants an airborne microwave cannon that can take down drones.

The Army is planning to purchase a Counter Unmanned Aircraft System (UAS) from Lockheed Martin with the goal to “field UASs with payloads capable of negating adversary UAS,” the Army said in its solicitation notice.

In other words, the Army wants to disable or destroy a drone with an airborne microwave beam.

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The Counter UAS is based on proprietary intellectual property from Lockheed Martin, who would develop and supply the system, the Army said in the notice.

Lockheed Martin has a long history of developing directed energy systems. The company has developed laser weapon systems, radio frequency and other directed energy technologies for air, ground and sea, according to its directed energy web page.

Going forward, the focus for these systems is on improving accuracy, mobility, size, weight and power, cooling, and minimal collateral damage, according to Lockheed Martin.

This comes in the wake of the alleged drone attack against Venezuelan President Nicolas Maduro earlier this month. The attack seems to have been carried out by drones carrying explosives. The drones allegedly exploded while he spoke at a military ceremony in Caracas.

A pair of hexacopter (six-rotor) drones appeared to carry the explosives, according to a report in Bellingcat.

Twitter suspends Alex Jones from key functions of account

Twitter on Tuesday announced that it had placed the account of InfoWars host Alex Jones on read-only status for seven days.

The microblogging platform joined other tech companies — including Apple, Facebook, Spotify and YouTube — that have banned the right-wing conspiracy theorist.

In the case of Twitter, although his account will remain online, Jones won’t be able to send tweets, retweet or like other tweets for one week.

Twitter reportedly said it had restricted Jones’ personal account after he posted a link to a Pericope video in which he told supporters to get their “battle rifles” ready against antifa, the mainstream media and “Chicom operatives.”

"We haven’t suspended the account but are requiring Tweets which contained a broadcast in violation of our rulesare deleted," a company spokeswoman told Fox News.

Early Wednesday morning, Jones responded in a 13-minute video that was posted to the Infowars Twitter account, in which he suggests that Twitter told him they would shut down his account if he’s found to be in breach of its rules again.

“On Twitter, we have been so careful even to follow their anti-free speech, university SJW rules, so a video about Donald Trump needing to take action against web censorship, that gets flagged and gets us suspended for seven days,” Jones says in the video, adding: “I guess Dorsey is toying with us, or his people are.”

Jones has amassed a following on the far-right while promulgating conspiracy theories that claim terror attacks such as 9/11 were actually carried out by the U.S. government. Among his claims is that the 2012 Sandy Hook Elementary School mass shooting, which left 20 children and six adults dead, was a hoax.

Facebook has been hit recently by the parents of Sandy Hook shooting victimsfor not fully banning Jones.

Jack Dorsey, the CEO of Twitter, faced pushback last week for saying that Jones’ account was still in place because he did not violate rules.

NASA engine test could move US one step closer to future Mars mission

STENNIS SPACE CENTER, Miss. – NASA is continuing a series of tests for its RS-25 engine, bringing it closer to a future deep-space mission to the moon and Mars.

The RS-25 engines, many of which were repurposed from the Space Shuttle program, will be part of the Space Launch System vehicle. The space agency claims that the SLS will be the most powerful rocket ever made, with two million pounds of thrust from four RS-25 engines, and eight million pounds of thrust from two solid rocket boosters.

Tuesday’s test included a new controller that will be used on actual flights of the spacecraft. The controller acts as a “brain” for the engine.

Dan Adamski, the RS-25 program director at Aerojet Rocketdyne, said the engines have been tested thousands of times, but upgrades are needed as technology improves.

“The new engine controller … controls valve positions, propellants [and] stuff like that going through the engine,” Adamski said. “Just like you’re not using the same computer that you used five years ago, we’re not using the same controller or computer that we used 20 or 30 years ago on the space shuttle main engine.”

NASAtestedthe engine earlier this year after adding a 3D printed part. Aerojet Rocketdyne engineers have brought down the cost and fabrication time by 50 percent, according to a press release from the company.

Tuesday’s demonstration was yet another stress test for the engine, which ran at more than 110 percent capacity.

NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine and a delegation of political leaders including Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant, Sen. Roger Wicker, R-Miss., and Rep. Steven Palazzo, R-Miss., were on site to observe the test. The engine created an extremely loud boom and vibration that was felt by observers under a hot and partly cloudy Mississippi sky.

Bridenstine will visit several NASA sites around the country in the coming weeks.

“We’re getting ready to launch what will be the largest rocket ever launched in the history of humanity,” Bridenstine said. “It’s going to have a bigger payload capacity and a bigger faring to carry larger objects than we’ve ever been able to put into orbit. This particular rocket, the Space Launch System is going to take us to the moon, and it’s going to take us on to Mars.”

Bridenstine said NASA has made significant contributions to the lives of humans on the Earth.

He also said the money spent is worth the cause. Experts have put a $100 billion to $1 trillion price tag for a mission to Mars.

NASA is planning to put humans on the Red Planet by the 2030s.

“The reason we do it is because we want to improve human lives on Earth, and if you look at the small amount that NASA’s budget is … we’re talking about one-half of one percent of the federal budget, and you look at the return on that investment,” Bridenstine said. “NASA has blazed a trail that has improved the human condition on Earth, and we want to continue that type of investment.”

The administrator also took time to explain what impact President Trump’s proposed U.S. Space Force would have on his agency.

Bridenstine, a former Republican member of Congress representing Oklahoma, previously has voted in favor of the creation of a Space Force.

“That particular path that put NASA on the exploration [science] and discovery [has] not changed,” Bridenstine said. “NASA has hundreds of billions of dollars of assets in orbit, and we have human lives in orbit. Space is so important to the human condition on Earth. We are now at a point if we were to lose space, it would be an existential threat to the United States of America, and what that means is: it has to be defended.”

A spokesperson for NASA told Fox News the RS-25 test was a success, and lasted just more than five-and-a-half minutes.

Bridenstine said the space agency is planning a test launch of the SLS and Orion space probe within the next 18 months.

EXCLUSIVE: Facebook must be broken up and face strict privacy controls, coalition urges FTC

A coalition of organizations is planning to ask the Federal Trade Commission to break up Facebook in order to restore control to its 2 billion users and prevent further abuses of privacy.

Freedom from Facebook, which has decried the tech giant’s mishandling of user data during the Cambridge Analytica scandal, says that Mark Zuckerberg’s company is likely in violation of a 2011 consent decree it signed with the FTC.

The FTC is currently examining whether the tech behemoth did, in fact, violate the 2011 consent decree. If the commission finds that it did, Facebook could be facing fines in the trillions of dollars that would likely bankrupt the company.

FACEBOOKFORCESADMINSOFPOPULARPAGESTOSHARELOCATIONINFORMATION

Under the consent decree, Facebook agreed to get consent from users before sharing their data with third parties and the company was required to have a third-party conduct audits of its privacy practices every two years to certify their effectiveness.

In the case of the Cambridge Analytica data scandal, the tech platform could face a fine of $40,000 for each of the 87 million users whose data was mishandled –adding up to several trillion dollars.

A figurine is seen in front of the Facebook logo in this illustration taken, March 20, 2018. REUTERS/Dado Ruvic - RC155C02C7D0

(Reuters)

Facebook, which also owns WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger, has become so embedded into every aspect of our lives that it’s hard to imagine it being broken up. The advocate group claims that Facebook and its subsidiaries account for more than three-quarters of mobile social networking traffic in the United States.

“Breaking it up is the foundation to ensuring that power is restored to the American people,” Sarah Miller, a spokesperson for Freedom from Facebook, told Fox News. “We’re looking at this from a perspective of needing to restore power to people over their relationships, over their privacy.”

In its comment to the FTC, Freedom from Facebookrecommends three main remedies: spinning off WhatsApp, Instagram and Messenger; enforcing interoperability standards, similar to what the FTC imposed on AOL Messenger during the AOL-Time Warner merger settlement in 2001; and imposing strict privacy rules.

“Without such structural remedies, Facebook—as the company has proven in recent years, when it has repeatedly apologized for the transgressions without fixing the underlying problems posed by its business model—will simply return to its standard operating procedure,” Freedom from Facebook’s public comment reads.

A representative from the tech platform previously told Fox News they don’t believe Facebook violated the 2011 consent decree, but that the firm is cooperating with the FTC’s probe.

When Zuckerberg was pointedly asked on Capitol Hill by Sen. Lindsey Graham (R.-SC.) about whether Facebook is a monopoly, the tech executive danced around the question, saying it “doesn’t feel like that” to him, which prompted laughter in the room.

Facebook warns new political influence possibly linked to Russia. Ellison Barber has the details.

Other lawmakers, including Sen. Ron Wyden, (D.-OR.), have floated the ideathat Facebook could be broken up for antitrust violations if it does not handle the burgeoning scandal.

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The FTC’s definition of a monopoly can be found here.

"It’s a question of political will and we think that there is," Miller said. "We can create that political will, we are creating that political will. Our democratic institutions need to stand up."

In addition to the FTC probe, Facebook is facing investigations by both the FBI and the Justice Department. The tech platform has come under fire, as well, for how its new ad policies negatively impact a host of different groups.

A recent survey by the Knight Foundation and Gallup showed large majorities of Americans are concerned about the power of internet companies to “give people a biased picture of the news, restrict the expression of certain viewpoints, and increase the influence of news that benefits the internet company and its preferred points of view.”

The FTC’s hearings on competition and consumer protection in will begin in mid-September and end in December.

Fox News reached out to Facebook for comment.

Police officers test new restraint technology

Police officers in Illinois are testing a new restraint weapon designed for situations where deadly force is not warranted.

In the gun range at the Buffalo Grove Police Department, officers from several suburban police departments were testing the new technology, known as the “BolaWrap.”

Wrap Technologies was showing its hand-held remote restraint device that fires an 8-foot Kevlar tether at a range of up to 25 feet.

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The Las Vegas-based company says it’s designed to restrain people who are unruly or uncooperative without having to resort to deadly force. The new weapon could be used if a person is threatening to harm themselves or is suffering from a mental illness.

Advocates have for the last several years called on police departments nationwide to rethink their use of force policies amid the killings of black people during interactions with law enforcement officers.

restraint tech

Police officers are testing a new type of restraint technology in Illinois. (Fox News)

“I think it’s just another tool in the toolbox for officers when they’re confronting perhaps a mentally ill person or a subject who wants to commit suicide. This might be a tool to help the officer control the subject,” Steve Casstevens, Buffalo Grove Police Chief, told Fox 32.

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The station reports that the “BolaWrap” costs $800 dollars and each tether cartridge is $30 bucks. It’s just gone into production and is being used by a few law enforcement agencies in California.

“First impressions are good,” said Aurora Police Chief Kristen Ziman.

Ziman explained that her only concerns about the technology are the danger of the tether wrapping around the target’s neck.

“But there are some times where we are dealing with subjects who are going to resist arrest, and so we have to move into that force continuum. And this is an appropriate tool,” Ziman said.

Fake videos? Computer program generates eerily realistic fake footage

Don’t believe everything you see.

We are all aware of the ongoing battle against fake news—which frequently includes made-up text and doctored images—but a new computer program can manipulate video in a way that’s disconcertingly convincing.

The program can alter video in such a way that the person on-screen mirrors the movements and expressions of someone in a different video.

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Set to be unveiled at a computer animation festival in Vancouver, the software can also tweak head and torso poses, eye movements and background details to create more convincing fakes, according to Science News.

These video forgeries are “astonishingly realistic,” Adam Finkelstein, a computer scientist at Princeton University not involved in the work, told Science News.

The program could have practical uses, such as producing dubbed films where actors’ lip movements match a voiceover, but it could also take the problem of fake news to a whole new level.

video manipulation 1

A new computer program analyzes the appearance of someone in one video (the “input”) and transfers that person’s facial expression, head pose and line of sight onto a person in another video (the “output”). (HYEONGWOO KIM ACM TRANSACTIONS ON GRAPHICS 2018)

Science News reports the algorithm starts off by scanning two different videos frame by frame, tracking 66 so-called “facial landmarks” to map someone’s features, expression, head tilt and line of sight.

For instance, in the example posted above, which shows former President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin, the program would distort Putin’s image to adopt Obama’s head pose and facial expression.

The technology can even tweak shadows, change someone’s hair or adjust shoulder height.

The end result? A weird video of Putin doing a convincing imitation of Obama’s exact motions and expressions.

Tokyo 2020 Olympics to use facial recognition in security first

Tokyo 2020 will be the first Olympics to deploy facial recognition technology to increase security around all venues, organizers announced on Tuesday.

Reuters reports that Olympics organizers are partnering with NEC, a Japanese telecommunications and information technology firm, to develop the first system of this kind to be implemented at the global sporting event.

The technology was demonstrated for the media at an event this week in Tokyo and will use IC chips within identification cards to automatically verify the identity of those entering over 40 venues, according to the wire service.

In order to facilitate the technology, more than 300,000 athletes and Games staff will need to submit photographs to a database before the Olympics start in July 2020.

facial recognition 2 reuters

NEC Red Rockets’ volleyball player Haruyo Shimamura demonstrates the face recognition system for Tokyo 2020 Olympics and Paralympics, which is developed by NEC corp, in Tokyo, Japan, August 7, 2018.(Reuters)

“Every time they enter the facility, they have to do a security check,” Tokyo 2020’s head of security Tsuyoshi Iwashita explained.

The facial recognition system will not, however, be aimed at spectators.

“Tokyo’s venues doesn’t always have enough space for the security check or even space to wait for the security check. When the events are happening, we expect many people to come and the weather will be very hot. This is why we introduced this facial recognition,” Iwashita added.

The technology was reportedly tested during the Rio 2016 Olympics.

“99.7 percent of the time, the face is recognized by the system correctly,” said NEC vice president Masaaki Suanuma.

‘Force field’ technology could make US tanks unstoppable

Astonishingly futuristic new tech creates a seemingly invisible, impenetrable, protective bubble around military armored vehicles making enemy attempts to fire at U.S. tanks pretty pointless – those rounds won’t hit the tank, they’ll explode mid-air.

Think of it almost like making a tank smart enough to defend itself. With the upgrade, tanks automatically protect the crew inside and prevent enemy rounds from making contact with the armor.

Within the blink of an eye, this remarkable technology detects the enemy fire, locates it and launches a response that destroys the threat at a safe distance from the vehicle.

It is sort of like a tiny missile defense system used to protect countries– but one designed to ride along with armored vehicles.

RPGs (Rocket Propelled Grenades) and even Anti-Tank Guided Missiles that can slay tanks are stopped mid-air, precisely intercepted and prevented from hitting the U.S. military tank.

Most types of enemy fire will never reach a tank protected with this tech. It will change warfare forever.

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The mind-blowing tech is called Active Protection Systems – or APS.

APS gives soldiers massively better protection, but without adding the weight of additional armor slowing down the vehicles’ speed and maneuverability.

BarrieTank2

File photo (US Marine Corps)

In the near term, the iconic main battle tank M1 Abrams will be the first to be kitted out with this remarkable new approach to keeping crews safe. The M2 Bradley Infantry Fighting Vehicles and Strykers are also expected to receive this remarkable upgrade soon as well.

Imagine the U.S. Army being able to send vehicles into battle that enemy forces cannot hit with their weapons. Every time they try, the tank automatically launches counter-measures destroying the would-be tank-slaying-round mid-air.

Enemy fire would be futile. The U.S. Army would be even more unstoppable.

Right now, two countries already have battle-proven APS: Russia and Israel.

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The United States defense industry has lagged behind on developing this futuristic method of shielding. To find a solution, the U.S. Army selected three companies to collaborate and adapt their battle-tested tech for U.S. military vehicles. The Israeli company Rafael’s Trophy system used by the Israel Defense Forces is being adapted for the Abrams and the Iron Fist from the Israeli IMI Systems for the Bradley. American company Artis’ Iron Curtain has been in development for use on the Stryker.

BarrieTank3

M1 Abrams tank with Trophy system (US Army)

In amazing news for Army families and soldiers, General Mark Milley recently told the Senate the Army intends to ultimately outfit the entire heavy force, all combat vehicles, with APS.

WHAT DOES IT STOP?

Basically, APS can stop weapons that are extremely destructive. Weapons that can potentially be lethal to tanks and other armored combat vehicles, even though they are protected by armor.

The APS “shields” could protect U.S. forces from light antitank weapons, guided missiles and rocket-propelled grenades.

Thus far, not every single weapon any enemy could wield would be stopped – but certainly many of the most commonly used would be stopped before impact.

This current generation of APS is very effective against lower-velocity explosive rounds fired by enemy aircraft and ground forces.

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HOW WILL IT PROTECT ABRAMS TANKS?

The U.S. Army has awarded a $193 million APS contract to Leonardo DRS to protect the new M1A2 Abrams tanks. The Israel Defense Forces has been using Trophy to protect its Namer heavy infantry fighting vehicle.

ARMY’S NEW MACHINE GUN WILL BLAST LIKE BATTLE TANKS

This APS Trophy uses a number of radars positioned around the tank. The radars help provide 360-degree detection of incoming fire.

Around the clock, the radar scans the entire perimeter out to its maximum range. When a threat penetrates this monitored area, Trophy automatically detects and classifies that threat. Breathtakingly fast, its super smart computer works out the correct kill point in space to intercept before the weapon can hit the tank.

Within milliseconds, Trophy has evaluated whether it is a real threat, sends a warning to the crew and nearby forces and also launches an EFP (Explosively Formed Projectile) to destroy the projectile.

The counter-measure intercepts the incoming, say RPG, and collides with it mid-air at a safe distance from the vehicle.

Translation – threats cannot penetrate Trophy’s protection, keeping the tank and crew safe from strikes that could have been lethal.

It is important to note that Trophy differentiates between serious and non-serious threats. For example, if a tank is rolling through a town and a child throws a rock at it – Trophy will not fire at, and destroy, the rock.

SO WHAT DOES IT FIRE?

Insiders call it a “hard kill” approach to stopping incoming threats.

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The interceptors are launched from the top of the tank. With Trophy, the interceptors are a series of small, shaped charges.

Trophy fires the small explosives at a specific point in space to exactly intercept and destroy the incoming enemy round.

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EXPOSING CONCEALED ENEMY ATTACK POSITIONS

Not only does the Trophy system stop the incoming rounds, it also pinpoints the position of the enemy firing at the tank. Trophy figures out the threat’s trajectory in order to successfully intercept the threat. Part of these calculations involves Trophy figuring out the incoming round’s point of origin.

Trophy can instantly relay this location to the force, enabling quick targeting to stop the source of the threat as well.

By doing so, Trophy provides an additional advantage. It rips away the enemy’s ability to conceal themselves. For example in an urban setting, once an enemy combatant fires an RPG from his hidden position in a building, the location will be exposed to the entire force by Trophy. The Army can quickly respond – and it will be the last time that enemy combatant ever tries to kill U.S. forces.

BRADLEYS AND THE IRON FIRST LIGHT

Trophy is not necessarily compatible with all U.S. Army combat vehicles. Power, size and weight are three key challenges to adapting APS to U.S. military vehicles.

Active Protection Systems rely on lots of power and can be rather heavy. A Bradley has less power available than a tank and a cumbersome, heavy APS could undermine the Bradley speed and maneuverability that soldiers rely on.

THIS ORANGE, SQUISHY BODY ARMOR MATERIAL COULD SAVE LIVES

The Army selected IMI’s Iron Fist for adaptation to the M2 Bradley infantry fighting vehicles.

General Dynamics is collaborating with IMI Systems to provide Iron Fist Light. Potentially this APS could be used to upgrade protection not just on the Bradley’s, but other vehicles, even light 4×4 vehicles.

Like Trophy, it is designed to provide 360-degree protection. Iron Fist Light finds threats two ways: a search and track radar and a staring infrared sensor. It detects hostile fire and small arms ammunition burst.

Iron Fist Light fires a small warhead to intercept the threat at a safe distance from the vehicle. It either destroys it or a shock-wave effect defeats it.

DANGER TO DISMOUNTED TROOPS?

Stopping incoming fire from ever hitting a tank is awesome to protect the crew inside- but what about the dismounted troops nearby? Will the explosion of the missile or RPG at a safe distance from the tank have the consequence of putting boots on the ground at increased risk?

TANK-KILLING ROBOT REVEALED

It is vital that soldiers near armored tanks are not put in further danger due to protection of the vehicles with APS. The explosion caused by the interceptor hitting the enemy round could result in threats like shrapnel raining down on dismounted troops.

Active Protection Systems definitely pose a challenge, but solutions are available. The U.S. military will need to evolve and consider how they need to adapt tactics, techniques and procedures to the deployment of this futuristic technology. In fact, clever adaptation could lead to dismounted troops near armored vehicles gaining enhanced protection and becoming safer than ever before too thanks to this tech.

Thus far, it seems as though Israel and Russia have largely been able to adapt, so solutions are readily available. If Russia can adapt, then the U.S. military most certainly can as well.

WHAT’S NEXT?

Right now, take the hypothetical extreme scenario of the U.S. forced to engage in battle against Russia. The U.S. Army would face armored vehicles that are protected by advanced APS – as in, protected by these amazing futuristic shields.

If the Russian military fired accurately on the U.S. Army vehicles, then the U.S. Army vehicles would be hit by potentially lethal rounds without APS to shield them.

If the U.S. Army responded by targeting the Russian vehicles firing missiles and RPGs at them, then the American rounds could be ineffective. Russia’s APS could potentially stop U.S. lethal rounds from ever making contact with Russian APS protected vehicles.

General Milley recently updated the Senate that within 24 months Active Protection Systems will be ready for operational use. Currently, there is only budget for four brigades to receive this life-saving, futuristic shield.

Artis’ Iron Curtain is the only U.S. APS under consideration with the U.S. Army right now for the Stryker.

Ultimately, the entire heavy force, all of the U.S. Army ground vehicles, including all the tanks, current combat vehicles and future combat vehicles will be ramped up with active protective systems. Down the line, Humvees, JLTVs and even U.S. Army helicopters might be outfitted with this remarkable tech.