Global Defence Technology is back for another issue packed with industry news and analysis. In this issue, we find out how DARPA’s biological aptitude testing project could change recruitment and training for specialist military roles, check out the latest exoskeleton tech, report from the Security and Counter Terror Expo, and more.

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DARPA is studying biological aptitude with the aim to understand and monitor the biology that underlies success in specialised military roles. We find out how this approach will help to optimise training for future warfighters and the recruitment process for specialist roles.

We also report from the Security & Counter Terror Expo 2019, look at the exoskeleton technologies being explored by the US Army Soldier Center for potential military applications, and speak to researchers studying what happens at the centre of explosions with the aim of improving the design of bomb protection systems.

Also in this issue, we catch up with the joint US-UK ‘Swarm and Search AI Challenge’, which intends to find better ways to play complex search and rescue missions using unmanned aerial vehicles. Plus, we speak to BAE Systems about the recent increase in its apprentice intake and its approach to training up the next generation of defence experts.

Let us know what you think of this month’s issue: Tweet us at @defencetech_mag or join the discussion in our Defence Technology group on LinkedIn.

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In this issue

SCTX2019: challenges and innovation in counter-terror technology

This year’s Security and Counter Terror Expo (SCTX 2019) focused on defence and security issues across eight diverse fields. From virtual reality military training suites to counter-drone technology,Talal Husseini reviews the key challenges and solutions discussed at the event.
Read our event round-up.

Biological aptitude testing: empowering the warfighter – and the recruiter

Militaries around the world are experiencing difficulties in recruiting the right number of highly qualified candidates for specialist roles. Grant Turnbull finds out how new military-funded research in the US aims to unveil new insights into the human body that could allow soldiers to better prepare for specialist roles and achieve new levels of physical performance on the battlefield.
Read the full feature.

Military exoskeletons: the next phase

The US Army is exploring commercial exoskeleton technologies for potential military applications, which can be used to support strength and endurance and protect soldiers from strain injury. Talal Husseini reviews the US Army Soldier Center’s requirements and takes a look at the companies leading the research and development of exoskeletons.
Check out our gallery feature.

Heart of blast: gaining bomb protection insights from the core of explosions

Understanding what happens in the very first moments of an explosion could help save lives by informing the design of bomb protection systems for buildings and military vehicles. Berenice Baker finds out how Engineers at the University of Sheffield are capturing data at the centre of blasts and how their insights can be applied to new technology development.
Read the interview here.

Fire Hack: using military drone swarms to tackle civil emergencies

A large swarm of drones being intelligently driven by machine-learning algorithms to seek out their next target sounds like an unsettling vision of a future battlefield. But US and UK military researchers are now looking at how swarming drones could be used during civil emergencies to map and predict danger areas and assist first responders. Grant Turnbull finds out more.
Read the full feature.

Inspiring the next generation of defence experts with BAE Systems

BAE Systems plans to recruit 700 new apprentices across its UK air, land and maritime businesses in 2019. Talal Husseini takes a look at the company’s approach to apprenticeships and how they help to train the next generation of defence industry talent in the UK.
Read the article here.

Next issue preview

The US Army has briefed industry on its upcoming electronic warfare program and is now asking for feedback. The Terrestrial Layer System (TLS) is an integrated EW and signals intelligence system for ground use that the army decided to pursue instead of the old Multi-Functional Electronic Warfare Ground and Dismounted system. We find out more about the project.

We also ask whether adapted versions of commercial smartphones could replace traditional military radios, report on the latest rifle technology from the EnforceTac exhibition, and visit Rheinmetall Denel Munitions in South Africa to learn about recent advances in munitions.

Plus, we take a look at new solutions being developed to neutralise small drone threats, speak to the British Armed Forces’ most senior female military officer about her work in the RAF, and find out more about the UK MOD’s plans for a Future Littoral Strike Ship.