• Army suicides on the rise

    Learn more in today’s DoD report

  • ARMY to revive blimps for combat?

    The Army and the U.S. Transportation Command are investigating whether updated airships can be revived for both combat and humanitarian troop movement.

  • Engineered Plants Could Be Precursor to Raw Plastics Material

    In theory, plants could be the ultimate ”green” factories, engineered to pump out the kinds of raw materials we now obtain from petroleum-based chemicals. In reality, its been an elusive goal.

    Now, in a first step toward achieving industrial-scale green production, scientists from the Department of Energy’s Brookhaven National Lab and their collaborators report engineering a plant that does produce the levels of compounds that could potentially be used to make plastics. The raw materials for most precursors currently come from petroleum or coal-derived synthetic gas.

    Additional technology is needed, but researchers say they’ve now engineered a new metabolic pathway in plants for producing a kind of fatty acid that can be used as a source of precursors to chemical building blocks for making plastics such as polyethylene.

  • Report Analyzes Broadband Access Across U.S.

    The Department of Commerce and National Telecommunications and Information Administration have released a report called ”Digital Nation II,” that analyzes broadband Internet access across the United States.

    The study is the the most comprehensive of its kind. It finds that even after accounting for socioeconomic differences, large gaps persist along racial, ethnic, and geographic lines.

    The report analyzes data collected through a survey of 54,000 households conducted by the Census Bureau. It shows that while virtually all demographic groups have experienced increases of broadband Internet use at home, and 64 percent of households overall have the service, there are still historic disparities among demographic groups.

    Officials worry that Americans who lack broadband Internet access are cut off from educational and employment opportunities.

  • NOAA Expands Education Portal

    The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has just completed a major update of the agency’s primary education resource portal; the website

    The aim is to better connect educators and students interested in NOAA’s education and science resources. The website serves as a portal to lesson plans, educational multi-media, data sources, career profiles, and other education content from across the agency.

    The content contains five themes. Teachers can find information about hurricanes, tides, climate change, the water-cycle or other earth science topics on the site. The site also provides information on professional development, academic scholarships, career exploration, and education grants.

    NOAA’s mission is to understand and predict changes in the Earth’s environment, and to conserve and manage coastal and marine resources.

  • Army initiates software development changes

    The service issued a memo detailing a common operating environment architecture as part of a broader software transition strategy. The strategy builds on the experiences of the Apps for the Army program. The service is developing plans for Apps for the Army 2 next summer focusing on industry-created software.

  • Mood Tracker app designed to help veterans

    There’s a new, FREE smart phone mobile application that makes it easier for servicemembers and veterans to track their emotional health after deployments. e got the story from the Army’s Dr. Robert Ciulla.

  • Army CIO Sorenson to retire

    The general spent more than 37 years in the service, including the last three as CIO. Mike Kreiger will be the acting CIO in the interim. Sorenson led several enterprise initiatives including moving the Army’s e-mail system to DISA.

  • Army to use VA e-health system at Iraq hospital

    The Army will use an open source version of Veterans Affairs electronic health records system. The software will be installed at a 50-bed hospital in Baghdad.

  • Army Directs New Energy Savings

    The Army has begun the process of overhauling the energy efficiency of all of its facilities worldwide. Two policy memos will change the way the Army designs and builds permanent buildings.

    The new guidance focuses on water reduction, energy consumption, and specific ways to reduce the impact of Army facilities on the natural environment. Those include more efficient siting, solar water heating, and storm water management. Also, all incandescent light bulbs and older lighting technology is to be replaced within five years.

    The Army Corps of Engineers has issued a study that found the Army spends about $1.5 billion dollars a year to provide electricity, and air handling for its structures. The new guidelines, they say, could save as much as 45 percent of that amount in new buildings.

  • Trauma treatment translated from the battlefield

    We talk with Dr. John Holcomb about advancements made in surgery on the battlefield.

  • Network integration gets intelligence to troops

    Tom Temin spoke with Army Major Mark Cervantes, assistant product manager for the Infantry Brigade Combat Team from the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico, about how network integration is getting intelligence into the hands of combat troops on the battlefield.

  • Army fills two top acquisition posts

    The Army has filled two of its highest acquisition jobs. Heidi Shyu has been appointed principal deputy assistant secretary for acquisition, logistics and technology. Scott Fish is its new chief scientist.

  • DoD reforms parallel Gansler Commission findings

    Changes in the Pentagon’s contracting process are taken from Jacques Gansler’s 2007 report commissioned by Army Secretary Pete Geren.