US Army develops new mapping tools to tackle A2AD threats

3 January 2018 (Last Updated January 4th, 2018 09:46)

US Army researchers are developing new littoral and inland mapping tools to tackle anti-access, area-denial (A2AD) threats posed by enemy forces.

US Army develops new mapping tools to tackle A2AD threats
Sensors can be mounted on towers like the one shown here, or on unmanned aerial vehicles. Credit: US Army Corps of Engineers Engineer Research and Development Center photo.

US Army researchers are developing new littoral and inland mapping tools to tackle anti-access, area-denial (A2AD) threats posed by enemy forces.

Enemy units use A2AD methods either to slow or stop an invasion by placing mines in the seabed near the shore and concealing forces inland, the army stated.

The Engineer Research and Development Center (ERDC) has developed a range of imaging sensors that can operate at night and during storms to detect mines hidden underwater.

ERDC is an organisation developed by the US Army Corps of Engineers.

“The sensors use video and radar to quickly map the underwater terrain, measure speed, direction and shapes of waves.”

The sensors use video and radar to quickly map the underwater terrain, measure speed, direction and shapes of waves. This accurately portrays the underwater environment.

Data is collected using unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) equipped with one or multiple cameras.

Additionally, a 3D terrain visualisation system is being developed to help guide soldiers to their destination along the safest route on land.

The system uses two types of sensors for collecting data which include light detection and ranging (LIDAR) and video, which can be mounted on a small UAV.

Researchers have also incorporated acoustic and seismic sensors into the mapping process.

These sensors send signals directly to the same 3D map and provide additional information about enemy movement. They are activated after being placed by a reconnaissance unit or UAV.