Dogs in the US military are wearing goggles to take advantage of augmented reality technology, and these good boys could help save the lives of servicemen and women.
The US military has been funding a project by Command Sight, Inc. that will help protect animal handlers in warzones. Many military dogs are tasked with finding explosives, but this can lead to issues as their handlers need to be close to give commands and as a result, can accidentally trigger the explosives.
To protect animal handlers, Command Sight, Inc. has developed augmented reality-enabled goggles for canines. These goggles will give dogs visual cues, and will also allow handlers to give verbal cues. Of course, the goggles wouldn’t be much use if handlers could not see what the dogs were seeing, so there is a feedback video that allows handlers to assess and change commands fluidly. Essentially, this technology allows for commands to come to service animals from afar.
The idea for this technology began in 2017 when Dr A.J. Peper recognised the need for improvements in how animals and handlers communicated in military situations. Since then, Command Sight, Inc has been developing the technology to integrate with the goggles that military dogs already wear for protection.
Despite the exciting technology, which looks like it may be able to save lives, it is not ready to be used in the field yet. The current design is reliant on wired systems, which means it can not be used practically in military situations.
Fortunately, the company has secured funding to continue the development of this project. This should mean that a production-level wireless version of this technology will be developed. Although it may take a couple of years, it looks like bomb detection may become a safer practice in the military.
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