IDF to develop sensor to track soldiers’ physical state

“A commander can know how much fuel and ammunition is left in a tank,” a source in Medical Corps says. “We want to enable infantry commanders to know basically the same about their soldiers.”

March 7, 2010 05:27
2 minute read.
IDF to develop sensor to track soldiers’ physical state

soldiers 88. (photo credit: )


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The IDF is seeking to develop a sensor that can be strapped on to a soldier that will enable commanders to track the physical state of their soldiers and determine if they are battle-ready ahead of operations.

The decision to pursue the technology came after the IDF Medical Corps completed a thorough research paper detailing available technology as well as the required sensors that the device will need to be equipped with.

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The need for such a device is compared to the information commanders are currently capable of receiving about military platforms such as tanks, artillery cannons and fighter jets.

“A commander can know how much fuel and ammunition is left in a tank,” a source in the Medical Corps said last week. “We want to enable infantry commanders to know basically the same about their soldiers.”

The corps‚ vision, the officer said, was to succeed in developing a small enough device that could be strapped on to a soldier’s body, ideally his wrist, and be able to detect physical parameters and transmit them to a computer database, carried by the commander.

“We want commanders to be able to know if a soldier is dehydrated or suffering from exhaustion or sun stroke,” the officer said. “This way, commanders will be able to assess if their units are fit to conduct operations.”

The device will also likely be used by high-school students attending pre-draft tryouts for elite units like navy commandos and the General Staff Reconnaissance Unit (Sayeret Matkal) to prevent sun stroke and dehydration.

The IDF is also trying to interest the US Army in freeze-dry blood technology that will enable soldiers to carry a unit of their own dried blood as part of their personal equipment into a battlefield.

In case of injury, the soldier will be able to add liquid to the unit and turn the freeze-dried blood crystals into a liquid blood that can be transfused by medics in the field. Currently, if a soldier is fatally wounded in battle, he will only receive blood either if evacuated to a rear medical center or if evacuated by helicopters, which carry blood units.

“This type of technology can save lives,” the officer said, adding that a significant percentage of deaths at war were caused by loss of blood.

The technology the IDF is pursuing is under development by Core Dynamics, a Ness Ziona-based biotech company. The IDF, which according to the officer is extremely interested in the technology, is searching for additional militaries around the world to help fund the project which is still in development stages.

Currently, the IDF said, that it knew how to freeze-dry blood but encountered complications when trying to turn it back into liquid since some of the blood cells were corrupted and could cause damage to a soldier’s kidney if transfused without filters.

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