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robot-challengeThe Pentagon is giving more time and money to companies that have shown promise in fielding a humanoid robot.

Eleven of 16 firms that put their robot prototypes through their paces in June at have now been given an additional six months and $1.5 million each by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency to continue their work, the Pentagon said on July 15.

The DARPA Robotics Challenge, or DRC, was originally scheduled to end with a winning robot in December, but has now been pushed back to June.

[Continue reading…]

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MH17 ShrapnelThe Financial Times posted a photo of what appears to be wreckage from the Malaysian Airlines jetliner peppered with shrapnel damage from an anti-aircraft missile.

The international community has pressed for an investigation into the cause of the Malaysian Airlines Flight MH-17 crash, However, many, including U.S. officials, have said the evidence points to pro-Russian separatists shooting down the passenger jet with an advanced surface-to-air missile system capable of hitting an aircraft flying at 33,000 feet.

The photographed wreckage above adds to that mounting collection of evidence.  [Continue reading…]

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120716-N-TG831-111Navy researchers are working to create nanofiber coatings for surgical implants and wound dressings that would help promote healing and also combat infection.

The work is being done by the Naval Medical research Unit, San Antonio, according to a report in the July issue of Naval Medical Research and Development News.

In one research area, the report states, scientists “plan to integrate [biocompatible] nanofibers into coatings for use on medical materials, such as titanium implants, to improve treatment for craniofacial injuries.”

Nanofibers bonded to the surface of implants could contain antibiotics to be released directly in the treatment area over a sustained time. Researchers believe this would reduce instances of postoperative bacterial infection and implant rejection resulting in further surgery. [Continue reading…]

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3D PRINTED PARTS FLY FOR FIRST TIME IN UK FIGHTER JETS

FARNBOROUGH, England — While 3-D printed guns and homes are already here, 3-D printed drones and fighter jets are still far from reality.

But that hasn’t stopped British defense giant BAE Systems Plc and other aerospace firms in the U.S., Europe and Asia from experimenting with the technology, which has begun migrating from research applications in labs to actual parts flying on aircraft, company officials say.

The London-based contractor has used the process to build metallic brackets for cameras on its next-generation Taranis drone warplane and the aging Tornado fighter jet. The specially equipped fighter became the first such aircraft to fly with 3-D printed parts during a December test flight at the company’s airfield in Warton, Lancashire. [Continue reading…]

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German Air Force Air-Air over Lithuania

FARNBOROUGH, England — Eurofighter’s Typhoon multi-role aircraft is being equipped with a new precision-guided, stealthy long-range cruise missile and an active electronically scanned array radar system, company officials said at the Farnborough International Air Show.

The enhancements are the latest in a series of technological upgrades for the roughly decade-old Typhoon fighter, a versatile supersonic aircraft now operated by the United Kingdom, Germany, Spain, Italy, Austria, Saudi Arabia and Oman.  The aircraft entered service in 2003.

“The aircraft was always designed as a multirole aircraft with a focus toward air superiority. When it was initially delivered, the aircraft had excellent air superiority capability and the intent was always to add the multi-role capability as we went along,” Paul Smith, capability development manager, Typhoon operational test pilot, told Military​.com in an interview. [Continue reading…]

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