Army tech on display at AUSA 2012

The Army’s largest conference of the year kicks off Monday morning at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center in Washington D.C. with Army Secretary John McHugh’s keynote speech.

Hosted by the Association of the U.S. Army, it’s a great chance to learn about the Army’s ever-changing innovation strategy. Last year, service leaders placed a focus on the their Science & Technology priorities set. This year, expect to hear plenty about the Army Network and Capability Set 13.

The Army has harped for years about updating it’s Network. It still sits as the service’s top priority. In October, it took a major step forward in getting that Network into soldiers’ hands in Afghanistan.

The Army is fielding the first sets of Capability Set 13, the service’s advanced battlefield communications system, in October to the 10th Mountain Division who will deploy with it next year. The systems includes the Army’s latest smartphones, advanced satellites and tricked out MRAPs the service has been boasting about.

Plenty more of the Army’s latest technical gizmos will be on display from the most advanced surveillance cameras to the latest sniper scopes to the lightweight UAVs.’s crack team of reporters will be on scene to keep you updated on all the conference’s news.

If there are any points of interest or questions you’d like us to ask, please write those suggestions in the comments box. We’ll be constantly monitoring it. Also, follow @DefenseTech on Twitter all week long for live updates.

About the Author

Michael Hoffman
Michael Hoffman is the executive editor at Tandem NSI and a contributor to He can be reached at
  • ltfunk3

    You should ask if the Taliban has superiour technology in each area. If not why do they think re-enforcing failure is a better strategy than learning from the winners.

    • Guest

      Yes, because the Taliban have definitely been thrashing us on the battlefield, as one can tell by the casualty ratios between ISAF and Taliban forces. We should totally emulate their strategies of sending toothless, illiterate, apes with rusty old rifles and sandals out to fight! Technology bad!


      • Guest

        To elaborate further: The advantage the Taliban has has NOTHING to do with technology. They are not “winning” because they are defeating the ISAF in combat. Apart from isolated ambushes and base attacks, they have never outright destroyed a NATO force in pitched battle. They have the advantage of being able to lay low and wait for us to leave an area, or lose the will to fight. They can hide in the mountains until we decide to pull out. They also have a disproportionate psychological effect whenever they kill someone.

        It doesn’t matter to them how many thousands of fighters die every year, but ever IED that goes off in a market, every soldier shot by a sniper, and every raid they carry out in a place like Kabul (no matter how much it fails or how quickly it’s put down) will strike fear throughout the country and generate TONS of media coverage.

        In short, their advantage is political, not martial

      • ltfunk3

        I always find it disturbing that the enemy is described as “toothless, illiterate, apes with rusty old rifles and sandals” when they are winning. I mean what does it say about the losers ?

        • majr0d

          “Toothless, illiterate, apes in sandals?”

          OMG we’ve been fighting “itfunks”!!!

          • ltfunk3

            Well no wonder you cant win

          • majr0d

            Hold up, I’m not done urinating on your victorius troops…

  • Pharsalus

    I suppose this continues the path from Soldier to hyper-tech silver-winged Paladin. It seems like these days, every grunt wants to be an 733t killer…

    Seriously, all this tech is good and well in small conflicts, unofficial ops and border wars. The moment more than a million soldiers are involved, there will be no gadget-money nor gadget-batteries. It will be back to steel helmets, Tommyguns and a mark one compass to find your way.

    And, guess who’s best at doing stuff with decrepid tech? Well, not the US Army… :)

    • Dan Gao

      If anything the transformation into hyper-tech soldiers isn’t moving fast enough. Far too often are the Taliban able to have a “fair fight” with US troops, where each side relies on instinct, eyeballs, and getting the drop on the other side. Our training is what gives us an edge here, but training doesn’t allow you to see through smoke and obscurants, or know where your buddies are when they are out of sight.

      Only with our recent fielding of the latest network are squads given access to blue force tracking and networked comms for each soldier. Add thermal goggles and weapon sights, micro UAVs/UGVs, and advanced weapons like the XM25 and you give our soldiers the ability to see and kill the enemy in any weather conditions, time of day, or terrain. This is what we are and should be striving for. This is what is needed for modern conflicts. If you pit a smaller unit equipped as listed above against a larger formation of grizzled soldiers with no tech but a lot of brawn, the former is going to outmaneuver and out gun the latter any time.

  • Guest

    You know what? Better tech saves lives. Look at our casualty rates for Iraq and Afgahnistan compared to our last major conflict where the enemy used irregular warfare tactics. We have improved our ablilty to locate the enemy and return fire. Our KIA are in the thousands instead of 10s of thousands. We loose more Soldiers to traffic accidents state side than to enemy fire in theater. I will those kinds of numbers any day.

  • Lance

    Hope to find out more on the recent buys of M-4A1s and will we find out if Colt or Remington arms won?? To see more of JLTV programs hope AM General wins they got the best out of the three.

  • mike

    “points of interest or questions you’d like us to ask”

    Anything at all on new battery developments for all this hi-tech gear that soldiers are going to have to lug around.

    Also, what are we doing to make command post footprints smaller and less dependent on massive banks of generators.

  • guest

    Itfunk are you really that stupid or are you just trying to annoy people? We could use carpet bombs and decimate those countries but we choose to not harm the civilians living there. you have no idea how much killing power the United States can use but holds back on it because it actually cares about life, unlike you perverted muslim extremists. please do the world a favor and kill yourself so we wont have to

  • guest

    Saudi Arabia: Jewish Bloodline, Jewish State