Support: August 29, 2004


The U.S. Army is now using 3-D cameras to capture information on how enemy troops operate. The U.S. Army has long ago turned CSI (crime scene investigation) into a weapon. The crimes are the sites of ambushes, or even battles, or enemy safe houses that have been raided, or locations where enemy fighters have set up weapons like rocket launchers or mortars. In peacetime, accidents of all kinds get the CSI treatment. 

What the military CSI are looking for is information, and the methods used to date have been taken largely from civilian police departments. The army has its own criminal investigators for normal crimes committed by American troops. The army also uses standard police equipment and techniques for these investigations. But over the years, the idea of applying the collecting of evidence in great detail has grown. The concept of incident investigation is actually an old military practice, going back over a century. But as more tools became available, more detail is collected, and more can be done with the information. Thus the U.S. Army trying out $30,000 (for black and white, $40,000 for color) 3-D cameras to capture highly detailed three dimensional computer images of a indoor or outdoor area. The DeltaSphere-3000 camera is put on a tripod, hooked up to a laptop computer and allowed to spend 5-30 minutes (depending on resolution desired) to capture the 3-D image. The device used LIDAR (Laser Radar) to do this. You can annotate the image, insert other objects into it (the paths of bullets), or use a model forming machine to build a solid scale model of the scene. This sort of thing is popular in trials. 

The analysts who examine all this evidence are looking for something friendly troops could have done to either avoid injury, or get the drop on enemy troops. You find, for example, that a little extra armor in certain parts of vehicles will disproportionately reduce injuries. Or that having combat troops move in a slightly different way will also reduce casualties. Its a matter of gaining an edge, or many small edges. It adds up in combat, and brings victory faster, at less cost.


Article Archive

Support: Current 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2001 2000 1999 



Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close