First, we have the Powerloader exosuit, now this. Are we taking all our ideas from 80's action films, or has someone given James Cameron DOD clearance?
The AN/PPS-26 STTW is a handheld device that can sense objects through walls. Douglas Graham demonstrated how the STTW works at a recent annual Association of the US Army Conference. A flick of a button sends a radar pulse through the plastic cubicle separating him from the rest of the crowded convention hall. Movement is then recorded as yellow blips on the display. Distance is measured through a wedge-shaped grid marked of every 5 meters. Sounds dreadfully familiar, doesn't it?
The STTW is far from perfect. It can't see through metal yet, or any material more than 8 inches thick. So it won't be much help if you're trapped in a steel bunker waiting for a xenomorph swarm to arrive. It also can't determine friendlies from opposing forces, although it can tell if that blip is carrying a gun. That's a slight comfort for anyone participating in a bug hunt. Developers Raytheon and L3 received multimillion dollar contracts to build at least 30 STTW's for testing. Let's just hope that they can solve its limitations, otherwise it's game over, man. Game over.
[source Wired magazine]