The 82nd Airborne Tests New Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) Goggles

3
1395

An article from Military.com reminded about a new viewing system for individual soldiers that has been in development and testing since about 2018 or so. The new system is referred to as ‘Integrated Visual Augmentation System’ (IVAS).

Photo: DVIDS

The foundation of IVAS is a Microsoft commercial product called HoloLense which is referred to as ‘mixed reality smartglasses’. The Microsoft HoloLense program is also known under the name ‘Project Baraboo’. The Microsoft product has evolved to more of a goggle set which is the foundation for IVAS. IVAS provides the soldier two advantages…improved situational awareness through heads-up display (HUD) functionality and target reticle projection/integration into the HUD.

Photo: DVIDS- Soldier dons the Capability Set 3 (CS 3) militarized form
factor prototype of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) during
a Soldier Touchpoint 3 (STP 3) live fire test event at Fort Pickett, Va in
October 2020
Photo: US Army

The heads-up display improves situational awareness by showing things such as map data. The weapon reticle data is transmitted from a sight unit mounted on the soldiers M4A1 carbine via Bluetooth to the IVAS HUD.

Photo: DVIDS- Soldier dons the Capability Set 3 (CS 3) militarized form
factor prototype of the Integrated Visual Augmentation System (IVAS) during
a Soldier Touchpoint 3 (STP 3) live fire test event at Fort Pickett, Va in
October 2020

The website ‘Breaking Defense’ did an article back in April of 2020 discussing how Ft. Bragg was using some of the thermal capabilities of the goggles for COVID-19 mitigation. Base personnel were checking soldiers temperatures by just looking at them. You can read the Breaking Defense article here:

https://breakingdefense.com/2020/04/covid-19-army-ivas-goggles-now-take-temperatures/

The IVAS program is consisting of four Soldier Touch Points (STP’s) so far. STP one (squad level testing) and STP two (platoon level) are completed. Touch Point 3 began on October 17th with roughly a company of soldiers with network integrated IVAS sharing data amongst users. STP 4 is supposed to occur in the spring of 2021 with fielding taking place the same year.

The Military.com article has interesting comments from soldiers involved in testing and can be read at this link:

https://www.military.com/daily-news/2020/11/24/armys-sci-fi-infantry-goggles-change-mechanics-of-shooting-soldiers-say.html?utm_source=Sailthru&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=EBB%20Mil%2011.25.20&utm_term=Editorial%20-%20Military%20-%20Early%20Bird%20Brief

With UAV’s fully integrated into air warfare, it was only a matter of time until technological improvements for the ground-pounder began to appear. In addition to IVAS, there are testing programs underway for robot ‘donkeys’ to carry gear and supplies for soldiers on the battlefield. I’m glad I retired in May of 2020. The battlefield is becoming increasingly lethal for personnel on all sides…technological improvement for the warfighter isn’t one-sided anymore.

3 COMMENTS

  1. Should we call it Microsoft Birth Control Glass?

    Neil Stephenson called kit like this “going gargoyle” in his classic _Snow Crash_. There’s a lot of potential with this.

  2. Thing is, it’s all great and highly advantageous… Right up until the batteries run out, and then it’s a very level playing field.

    Back when they were first screwing around with Force XXI, we got “volunteered” as a conventionally-armed Engineer battalion to be training dummies for a Force XXI Infantry platoon.

    Scenario was we’d set up a conventional battalion-level defense, and then they’d attack. We did not realize what we were dealing with, in that what we expected was the usual “OPFOR platoon harasses larger unit” sort of thing. What we got was fucking massacred, starting somewhere around 22:00, and ending just before dawn. That platoon took out two line companies and most of the HHC, zero casualties. With their high-speed gear, it was like shooting fish in a barrel.

    Then, the batteries ran out on all their toys. This was just as the sun was creeping up past BMNT, and as soon as we had the light, they got pinned down and wiped out by the survivors. The whole thing was educational as hell, for me–Biggest point I learned was that if someone has infrared lasers and decent night-vision goggles, it’s suicide to take them on in the dark if you’re not similarly equipped. Even then, the attacker has the advantage of choosing when and where to engage, and you’re going to constantly be on your back leg, trying to react and respond.

    Take an American unit equipped with modern gear, put it up against typical Third-world forces, and it becomes sickeningly easy to kill them. Without modern night-vision and sighting equipment like the infrared laser, it isn’t even a contest–It’s sheer, unadulterated murder.

    Not that that’s a bad thing, so long as I’m on the side with all the toys.

  3. Well, when your organization is chock full of vibrant diversity and all its “strengths” (evidenced by the outstanding examples of such vibrancy in the pics, just like literally every DoD photo op), you BETTER have tech toys to tip the balance in your favor. That and drones, air support, and of course financial leverage (sanctions, IMF, etc) to extort anyone who dares to go off the global slave plantation that the US oversees on behalf of its small hat wearing masters.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here