Army tests the future of warfare... goggles that can tell when soldiers are nodding off

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Eye goggles that detect when soldiers are nodding off or stressed are to be trialled by the Army.

© Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images Soldiers from 5th Battalion, The Rifles tried out glasses which form part of a behavioural monitoring system – Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images

Earlier this week, soldiers tested a range of new war-fighting technologies on Salisbury Plain as part of the annual Army Warfighting Experiment.

Soldiers from 5th Battalion, The Rifles tried out glasses which form part of a behavioural monitoring system. Using biometric readings, they feedback to screens viewed by commanders information such as fatigue, stress, distraction and spatial awareness of the wearer, by monitoring pupil dilation.

© Provided by The Telegraph The Army also tested high-fidelity ‘extended reality’ headsets, which creates virtual battlefields for soldiers to practice combat – Finnbarr Webster/Getty Images

The devices will track eyes for real-time use in the battlefield.

Jesse Tebbs, the director of research and development at EXO Insights, a digital technology company, joined forces with the glasses manufacturer Adhawk, in order “to gather physiological and behavioural insights” from a range of larger wearable kit.

Mr Tebbs said they will use the eye-tracking glasses in order to quantify and qualify different psychophysiological states so that they can recommend various behavioral science based training options to improve human performance.

© Provided by The Telegraph Two soldiers take a virtual ride on a mobile tank simulator – Fiona Hanson for The Telegraph

He explained that the goggles carry a novel eye-tracking technology, which is a first to not be based on infrared cameras.

Mr Tebbs said: “This means they are more reliable in mission-critical situations, like combat, and provide a more constant stream of data.”

Lieutenant General Sir Christopher Tickell, the Deputy Chief of the General Staff, said that the Army Warfighting Experiment exercise was to “harness technology to prepare for complex future warfare”.

“It has been designed to experiment with and showcase next generation Collective Training Systems to inform future Army and wider Defence force development decisions.”

© Provided by The Telegraph The Ministry of Defence said that the devices on show put ‘the soldier at the heart of the technology’ – Fiona Hanson for The Telegraph

The Ministry of Defence said that the devices on show put “the soldier at the heart of the technology to meet ‘Generation Z’ capabilities and expectations”, adding: “The next-generation technologies leverage cutting-edge industry capabilities and enable rapid trial, experimentation and integration of new concepts.”

Lance Corporal Joshua Dowding, of 5th Battalion, The Rifles, took part in the experiments. He said: “It is good to see that people are thinking about the future for us soldiers and improving our lives. 

“There is nothing worse than a soldier being given a piece of equipment that turns out to be the worst piece of kit you have ever had to use. So, it’s nice to come here and say, yes I would use this or no I would never use this.”

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