Beta

Slashdot: News for Nerds

×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

DARPA Developing Super Scope

Soulskill posted more than 5 years ago | from the i-can-see-my-house-from-here dept.

The Military 44

Iddo Genuth writes "Researchers at the Strategic Technology Office of the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) are developing new high-resolution scopes that extend the range of viable image recognition and reduce atmospheric interference. Still in the early prototyping stage, DARPA hopes the new optical system (PPT presentation) will eventually result in a decrease of friendly fire incidents and collateral damage from military operations. 'Called the Super-Resolution Vision System (SRVS), this new system exploits atmospheric turbulence effects that magnify pieces of images behind heat haze. The formal name for this phenomenon is atmospheric turbulence-generated micro-lensing and it creates a brief, high resolution image behind the haze. The SRVS takes many such images and collates them to create a cohesive image of the entire larger area under observation using new advances in signal processing made possible by advances in computer processing power and increased storage capabilities.'"

cancel ×

44 comments

Super Scope!? (5, Funny)

Mooga (789849) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178245)

Didn't Nintendo make that years ago?

Re:Super Scope!? (1)

Anubis_Ascended (937960) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178337)

I was thinking exactly the same thing.

Re:Super Scope!? (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 5 years ago | (#25179339)

I'm glad I'm not the only one who thought "Nintendo" after reading "Super Scope".

Re:Super Scope!? (1)

guyminuslife (1349809) | more than 5 years ago | (#25180927)

My first thought was: Does it come with a Power Glove?

super scope was already invented by nintendo (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25178257)

those idiots in the military are idiots!

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1, Insightful)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178363)

I don't know much about the US infantry (and being /. I didn't RTFA), but where I serve only snipers and sharpshooters use scopes. Most friendly fire incidents are not the work of snipers, who take the time to accurately engage and ID their targets. This sounds to me that either the US infantry is reckless (snipers firing without positively IDing their targets), or that the term 'friendly fire' was used to gain support from those unfamiliar with military tactics.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

Original Replica (908688) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178451)

Don't tanks, attack helicopters and ground support planes also use scopes? Sure it isn't mounted right down the barrel, but they all use some sort of optical/computer enhanced imaging for target acquisition. I don't know the statistics of where friendly fire is coming from, but a better target identifiying ability for fighting vehicles has got to be a good thing in that regard.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (2, Insightful)

GooberToo (74388) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178511)

Don't tanks, attack helicopters and ground support planes also use scopes?

Yes. Just about every modern attack platform has some form of optics involved in their target acquisition system. There are few areas of the military where a system like this, assuming it is truly capable, would not be leveraged. Possible uses range from snipers to UAV to attack helicopters.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

gadget junkie (618542) | more than 5 years ago | (#25183129)

Don't tanks, attack helicopters and ground support planes also use scopes?

Yes. Just about every modern attack platform has some form of optics involved in their target acquisition system. There are few areas of the military where a system like this, assuming it is truly capable, would not be leveraged. Possible uses range from snipers to UAV to attack helicopters.

I think that this technology can be applied only on stationary scopes tough, since you must take an inordinate amount of screenshots of the same target for the technology to work its magic.
So, stationary scope looking at stationary target = good, moving scope looking at a moving target = bad. Not a bad tradeoff since a moving target is usually much simpler to find/id/kill.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (2, Interesting)

FridgeFreezer (1352537) | more than 5 years ago | (#25179303)

Friendly fire isn't a myth, I suspect it goes somewhat unreported in the US compared to over here as it seems to be other countries' soldiers that are usually on the wrong end of it.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/world/middle_east/2921807.stm

Here's to 60 years of precision bombing - yeeee haaaaw!

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

Dun Malg (230075) | more than 5 years ago | (#25179771)

Don't tanks, attack helicopters and ground support planes also use scopes?

Yes, but they're called "sights". This is the source of the confusion. THe writer is clueless and doesn't know that "scope" generally means a little thing clamped to a rifle. It's the same kind of ignorance found when they call magazines "clips".

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

DougF (1117261) | more than 5 years ago | (#25181357)

Don't tanks, attack helicopters and ground support planes also use scopes?

Optics used on weapons platforms are tradeoffs on power, size, and resolution. There is only so much room on fighter aircraft, and with modern anti-aircraft missiles, it means pilots often work at the limits of the equipment. Advances in electronics have led to advances in optics (Sniper pods, etc) and hopefully DARPA can achieve another breakthrough, but I wouldn't get my hopes up as many of DARPA's projects prove too costly or too tough to engineer at that particular point in time.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25183693)

DARPA's projects prove too costly or too tough to engineer at that particular point in time.

You mean they usually are too cool to remain public and therefore are shut down and continued under a heavy top secret label.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (2, Interesting)

Nutria (679911) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178465)

but where I serve only snipers and sharpshooters use scopes.

Same in US.

This sounds to me that either the US infantry is reckless (snipers firing without positively IDing their targets)

Unlikely.

or that the term 'friendly fire' was used to gain support from those unfamiliar with military tactics.

More likely.

Even more likely: the reporter got it wrong.

Or it's to be used in assassination attempts from ultra-long range where the target is in a crowd of non-targets or friendlies. But that's just paranoid ranting. Isn't it?

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

Dun Malg (230075) | more than 5 years ago | (#25179751)

only snipers and sharpshooters use scopes

This is true. The problem is with the idiot knowlessman writer who chose the word "scope". The more correct term would be "sight", as found on large armored vehicles, ATGM launchers, and aircraft. They're not likely to be able to pack the equipment necessary to use "advances in signal processing made possible by advances in computer processing power and increased storage capabilities" into anything a guy with a bolt action rifle will want clamped to his receiver.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 5 years ago | (#25187351)

or that the term 'friendly fire' was used to gain support from those unfamiliar with military tactics.

I heard a reporter tell a story about when he was in Afghanistan and was out getting stories he'd ride around with local guides in their vehicles. They apparently happened upon an active battlefield one day in a large basin when an Apache turned and started to bear down on their position. When it was about 2 miles out the Apache veered off and left his convoy alone. He later found out the gunner had recognized him from the lunch table he was at a few days prior, at the military base.

Apparently they have fabulously stabilized scopes on the bottom of those things. I've used excellent rife scopes and they're not even in the same century as something that could positively ID a human face at two miles, from a helicopter. That said, actual snipers these days reportedly use orbital laser measurements of atmospheric conditions to calculate their windage adjustments. I forget what the records are for successful shots, but it's rumored that those around the victims often never hear a report.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 5 years ago | (#25193227)

In Lebanon we found a rocket launcher (US-made, but I am not familiar with them so I do not know which model) all ready for launch, with a huge binocular optical scope. I was a good kilometer from the shoreline and pointing the scope at the ships (however far away they stay from the coast) I could see the sailor's faces and beards clearly. I even think that I could make out blinks. This is with an _optical_ scope on a tripod. The electronic stuff must be scary indeed.

It's nice to know that the (presumably) American Apache pilot had IDed his target before firing. I wonder what the firing criteria are? Is he open for fire at the sight of a weapon? Was he looking for someone specific?

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 5 years ago | (#25194979)

This is with an _optical_ scope on a tripod.

Wow, and attached to a rocket launcher? That's gotta be a $2000+ scope. No wonder my taxes are so confiscatory.

It's nice to know that the (presumably) American

well, NATO anyway. Highly likely he was American, just based on numbers.

Apache pilot had IDed his target before firing. I wonder what the firing criteria are? Is he open for fire at the sight of a weapon? Was he looking for someone specific?

Oh, that was in the story too. He was cleared and instructed to fire on anything non-NATO in the battlefield. This gunner was a bit more conscientious than his orders. IIRC he called in his non-fire decision and was not given any challenge on his decision - they don't want any friendly fire, but they didn't want any enemy combatants leaving the area alive either.

I suppose it's not such an awful thing that the gunners can see the faces of the men they're about to kill. Dehumanizing death is all too common.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

dotancohen (1015143) | more than 5 years ago | (#25202375)

This is with an _optical_ scope on a tripod.

Wow, and attached to a rocket launcher? That's gotta be a $2000+ scope. No wonder my taxes are so confiscatory.

I would hazard a guess that it is an order of magnitude more expensive than that. Note that this setup could fire more than one rocket. I didn't see other rockets, but I am have since found out that there were either three or five rockets for that one launcher.

It's nice to know that the (presumably) American

well, NATO anyway. Highly likely he was American, just based on numbers.

Apache pilot had IDed his target before firing. I wonder what the firing criteria are? Is he open for fire at the sight of a weapon? Was he looking for someone specific?

Oh, that was in the story too. He was cleared and instructed to fire on anything non-NATO in the battlefield. This gunner was a bit more conscientious than his orders. IIRC he called in his non-fire decision and was not given any challenge on his decision - they don't want any friendly fire, but they didn't want any enemy combatants leaving the area alive either.

I suppose it's not such an awful thing that the gunners can see the faces of the men they're about to kill. Dehumanizing death is all too common.

Authorized to shoot at anything non-NATO? That's absurd! That's slaughter. If an order like that ever came out of my higher-ups, I am certain that my commander wouldn't even let it trickle down to us. We take every opportunity _not_ to kill the enemy, and especially not anything without ID.

Re:super scope was already invented by nintendo (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 5 years ago | (#25206725)

Authorized to shoot at anything non-NATO? That's absurd! That's slaughter. If an order like that ever came out of my higher-ups, I am certain that my commander wouldn't even let it trickle down to us. We take every opportunity _not_ to kill the enemy, and especially not anything without ID.

I'm glad to hear that. What I heard was at least third-hand, so I give it that much veracity.

A real product (1, Redundant)

Nerdfest (867930) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178259)

... is a long way off.

Re:A real product (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25178285)

And nevertheless most likely the ppt-presentation will contain more details than a presentation done by consultant, manager, whatever for some business plan that is to be realized within one year.

Didn't look into it though (but nobody expects that here anyway...) ...

Re:A real product (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25178407)

Of course it's a long way off, for closer work they just put their sunglasses on.

A well functioning product may well be a ways off in time, but don't doubt they aren't playing with the software end of this already, even if in well less then perfect form. Wonder if I should shave my beard off in case they working on an automated drone,,,

Re:A real product (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25181701)

Fuck off! Seriously, this is not insightful. DARPA's job is to do what would otherwise be impossible, so of course its a long way off.

Re:A real product (1)

Nerdfest (867930) | more than 5 years ago | (#25184105)

Apparently, nobody got the joke.

As seen on slashdot (5, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25178263)

exactly one month ago [slashdot.org]

Re:As seen on slashdot (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25182489)

I didn't see it, so fuck off then.

Important information for all slash dot readers (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25178305)

Approximately, 50 million years ago, Jesus had sexual incertourse with a a female Tirannasorus Rex, and as a result I was bornd, creating GOD.

Re:Important information for all slash dot readers (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#25178501)

How can GOD be off topic? I am EVERYWHERE doofus.

not that new (4, Informative)

gregski (765387) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178359)

Lucky imaging has been used in astrophotography:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lucky_imaging [wikipedia.org]

i believe the main difficulty would be in the automation of the technique.

Re:not that new (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178425)

Yes, that was my first thought, once I'd worked out whether the article was about a microscope, telescope or oscilloscope.. Trust the military to re-invent something and give it a $100 name.

ISTM the main drawback is the unreliability of the technique. I wonder what acronym they'll assign to adaptive optics when they "discover" that, too?

Re:not that new (1)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | more than 5 years ago | (#25187407)

I wonder what acronym they'll assign to adaptive optics when they "discover" that, too?

Scopes With Frikkin' Lasers Attached to Their Heads?

Half asleep but let me try to understand this... (1)

syntek (1265716) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178375)

So basically it takes a lot of little snaps of objects in the distance that are effected by the "heat wave effect thing(like I said I just woke up and I haven't started the coffee yet)" and then pieces together what the object actually is?

From what I can tell... (1)

copponex (13876) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178611)

The bits of magnified image are the only ones that are collected. Then the zoomed bits are stitched together, so you get a clear picture of what is very far away.

Not quite... (1)

l00sr (266426) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178617)

Though there are 'researchers' at DARPA, they're generally not the ones doing the research. Most likely this is DARPA opening the bidding process to find someone to develop this technology.

Here's an idea (1)

apankrat (314147) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178709)

How about they test it by finding one of the Apollo Lunar Modules ?
In fact, I'd very much like to see NASA test upgraded Hubble this way too :)

Re:Here's an idea (3, Funny)

Lord Bitman (95493) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178739)

Phase 1: Pump atmosphere into space.

Re:Here's an idea (1)

Fumus (1258966) | more than 5 years ago | (#25178939)

Phase 2: Wait for the sun to heat up the air between us and a distant star.

Re:Here's an idea (1)

KGIII (973947) | more than 5 years ago | (#25179119)

Well... I dunno what step three is but I know that step four is profit!!!

Old News? (1)

supernova_hq (1014429) | more than 5 years ago | (#25179109)

I'm too lazy to search for it, but either I'm having one hell of a deja-vu moment, or slashdot ran a story about this exact thing a few months ago...

Purpose (1)

Wes Janson (606363) | more than 5 years ago | (#25182733)

Overall, it's probably more useful for observation than for actually extending the shooter's range. The limiting factors as they stand now tend to be based around the immutable laws of exterior ballistics. Having an optic capable of resolving a target at 3000 yards is of no use if your platform, on its very best day, is only capable of semi-consistent hits at 1500 yards. The time delay isn't quite as terrible as some might think (unlike Halo, in real life it can take several seconds for your bullet to make it downrange to the target, so if the target is mobile you're probably screwed), but definitely not an advantage either.

Whats that quote... (1)

NoName6272 (1376401) | more than 5 years ago | (#25279831)

Whats that quote, something about setting your eyes beyond the horizon or something...
Perhaps they are trying to extend scope range for the time that they hope bullets can go just as far.
Also, with the article they have a sniper and his spotter as picture at the top; so I am guessing it is for enhanced sniping, but usually its not the image but the distance that is the problem to my knowledge. Either way an advance is an advance, were one step closer to... something.
~

NoName

Check for New Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...