Sensors are playing an increasingly important role in the American military's race to hold onto its technological edge. The U.S. Army's Common Remotely Operated Weapon Station (CROWS) II program, awarded late last year, offers improved thermal sights that are smaller and take less energy to use. The supplier, Kongsberg Defense & Aerospace AS, is using thermal imaging modules from BAE Systems. BAE's TIM1500 are said to be the longest-range uncooled imager, offering a smaller size than cryogenically cooled imagers that require much more power. CROWS II is being added to U.S. Army vehicles such as the M1114 up-armored High Mobility Multi-Wheeled Vehicle and Mine Resistant Ambush Protected trucks.
An in-depth survey of 700 current and future users of 3D printing holds few surprises, but results emphasize some major trends already in progress. Two standouts are the big growth in end-use parts and metal additive manufacturing (AM) most respondents expect.
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