Tech

May 10, 2012

Army scientists explore wireless power transfer

Tags:
by Bindu Nair
Army News

Army Science and Technology has demonstrated wireless power transfer over 4-5 inches from helmet to vest.

The American soldier is equipped with more capabilities than ever before. These capabilities come in the form of new and more powerful devices that translate to a need for more power.

Currently, power is supplied to the dismounted Soldier through a collection of batteries, many of them rechargeable. A focus of Army Science and Technology is to figure out how to power the soldier, and to enable all of his/her new capabilities, without increasing (and ideally decreasing) his/her physical load.

In order to accomplish this imperative, the U.S. Army is exploring a variety of different technologies and concepts. One exciting technology that opens up different concepts of powering the soldier is the wireless transfer of power. The U.S. Army is allocating $5-$6 million to advance these technologies.

Wireless power could eliminate the need for bulky cables, especially between the Soldier’s helmet and vest (where centralized power sources might reside). Wireless power also allows for the recharging of Soldier gear whenever the Soldier enters a “recharging zone,” to include a vehicle, certain areas within a forward operating base, etc.

The U.S. Army funds the Institute for Soldier Nanotechnology,or ISN, at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, known as MIT, in Cambridge, Mass. One of the many discoveries at the ISN is the invention and development of strongly coupled magnetic resonators that can transfer electrical power over (relatively) large distances.

Scientists and engineers at the U.S. Army’s Natick Soldier Research Development and Engineering Center, or NSRDEC, in Natick, Mass., have picked up this concept and worked with the company founded by ISN technology developers, as well as its competitors, to design systems that can wirelessly transfer power between the soldier helmet and the soldier vest.

Current capabilities allow for using a soldier battery (Li-145) on the vest or torso to transmit ~5W of power to a helmet receiver at about 50 percent efficiency. Current programs are in place to increase that efficiency. As might be expected, the shorter the distance required for power transfer, the more efficient the transfer process.

The U.S. Army is also leveraging work performed by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency. One effort of note explores the simultaneous wireless recharging of multiple items. The U.S. Army’s Tank and Automotive Research Development and Engineering Center, known as TARDEC, in Warren, Mich., and Communications Electronics Research Development and Engineering Center, or CERDEC, in Aberdeen, Md., are both expanding on this (and alternative) technologies to increase the efficiency of power transfer over longer distances (50 feet) so that soldier recharging from vehicles and recharging from areas within a forward operating base can become realities.

The concept is to develop a future interoperable system so that organic soldier equipment recharging can reduce both the cognitive and physical load on the dismounted soldier.

 




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines September 2, 2014

News: Debris yields clues that pilot never ejected - When investigators were finally able to safely enter the crash site of an F-15C “Eagle” fighter jet on the afternoon of Aug. 27, they made a grim discovery that concluded more than 30 hours of searching – the pilot never managed to eject from the aircraft.  ...
 
 

News Briefs September 2, 2014

Pentagon: Iraq operations cost $560 million so far U.S. military operations in Iraq, including airstrikes and surveillance flights, have cost about $560 million since mid-June, the Pentagon said Aug. 29. Rear Adm. John Kirby, the Pentagon press secretary, said the average daily cost has been $7.5 million. He said it began at a much lower...
 
 

Unmanned aircraft partnership reaches major milestone

A team of research students and staff from Warsaw University of Technology have successfully demonstrated the first phase of flight test and integration of unmanned aircraft platforms with an autonomous mission control system. The demonstration marks a significant milestone in a partnership between the university and Lockheed Martin that began earlier this year. This is...
 

 

Raytheon delivers first Block 2 Rolling Airframe Missiles to US Navy

Raytheon delivered the first Block 2 variant of its Rolling Airframe Missile system to the U.S. Navy as part of the company’s 2012 Low Rate Initial Production contract. RAM Block 2 is a significant performance upgrade featuring enhanced kinematics, an evolved radio frequency receiver, and an improved control system. “As today’s threats continue to evolve,...
 
 
Courtesy photograph

Two Vietnam War Soldiers, one from Civil War to receive Medal of Honor

U.S. Army graphic Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Bennie G. Adkins and former Spc. 4 Donald P. Sloat will receive the Medal of Honor for actions in Vietnam. The White House announced Aug. 26 that Retired Command Sgt. Maj. Bennie G. A...
 
 

Sparks fly as NASA pushes limits of 3-D printing technology

NASA has successfully tested the most complex rocket engine parts ever designed by the agency and printed with additive manufacturing, or 3-D printing, on a test stand at NASA’s Marshall Space Flight Center in Huntsville, Ala. NASA engineers pushed the limits of technology by designing a rocket engine injector – a highly complex part that...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>