In the future, a soldier will wear a smart uniform, a smart helmet, smart boots and a belt pack carrying his own heating and cooling system as well as a power generator. Instead of hauling bulky rations, he will get nutrients through a transdermal patch and drink water from a pack on his back.
1 Headgear Information Central
The biomechanically engineered helmet will have maps and motion sensors and will protect against laser weapons
Sensor Emitters Geolocation Devices Radio Transceiver
2 Weapons Lethality Central
The future weapon system will contain a wireless link to the helmet, allowing the soldier to target the enemy and voice activate the electronic trigger
3 Microclimate Conditioning Endurance Central
The uniform's innermost layer has microtubes with circulating fluid to provide 100 watts of heating and cooling from head to toe
Fluid Supply Cooling/Heating Stack Power Supply Micropump/Motor
4 Combat Uniform Survivability Central
The uniform will be impermeable to chemical or biological weapons, will have sensors to change its color and a power/data link up to the helmet
Electrospun Materials Power/SensorGrid Circulation Tubules Skin-Temperature Sensor Patch
5 Physiological Monitoring Lifeline Central
To monitor a future warrior's physiological status, the boots and helmet as well as the innermost layer of the uniform will contain tiny microsensors embedded in the fabric
6 Power Duration Central
A modulating 2 to 20-watt microturbine fueled by liquid hydrocarbon and weighing less than 1 lb. (.5 kg) will power a soldier for six days
Fuel Valve Fuel Filter Turbo-Generator Liquid Fuel Plug-In Fuel Cartridge
ON THE BATTLEFIELD High-tech weaponry and nanotechnology will make the future warrior more lethal and better protected. Swooping into enemy territory, he can shoot at targets two miles (3km) away an remain undetected.
AERIAL DELIVERY Dropped from aircraft as far as 25 mi. (40 km) away, batwing-like parafoil gliders will guide troops and supplies for precise landings into designated drop zones.
HIGH-TECH COMOUFLAGE Smart materials will instantly change uniform patterns and colors. A special system will project 360[degree] false images, making the soldier invisible.
VISOR DISPLAY A visor display with night-vision sensors that fuse various levels of infrared with image intensification, as well as Combat ID, will help tell friend from foe.
COMBAT WEAPONS Light Fighter Lethality weapons, both wrist mounted and handheld, will be the weapons of the future with target detection and long-distance capability.
NANOTECHNOLOGY New processes will help create lighter, tougher body armor. Tiny sensors embedded in the fabric will detect wounds and report the soldier's status to medics.
Source: U.S. Army Soldier Systems Center Text by Kathleen Adams