Military exoskeletons will collect a vast amount of data, but what should be done with it remains an open-ended question. ExoSense will be a funded project to answer this question. Topic #A214-003 // ExoSense is the formal designation for this project. The project is powered by SBIR and the Army Applications Laboratory (AAL). AAL is looking for a creative solution to develop a system that organizes and collects exoskeleton sensor data into an open-architecture handheld radio device. The packaged data could be integrated into the Nett Warrior platform for dismounted soldiers’ situational awareness utilizing a ruggedized Android smartphone as a platform.
Exoskeleton and wearable robots can come with a plethora of sensors. Servo motors track rotational position and acceleration. Potentially, this can illustrate not just the speed of a soldier’s movement but how hard each step is taken which in turn can correlate to fatigue. Additional integrated sensors can monitor environmental and core temperature, moisture, location, heart rate, oxygen level, blood pressure, battery charge, body posture, internal electrical signals, and more. As wearable sensors become more accessible over time, the cacophony of data will only increase. It is no wonder that a project is being created based on this topic.
How is ExoSense different?
This funding opportunity is focused on small businesses through the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and is part of the Special Program Award for Required Technology Needs (SPARTN). SPARTN aims to be a blend of government and industry which is capable of introducing best practices and innovation. The intent is for a faster program that meets the Army’s needs and provides contact to the end-users. ExoSense has a potential budget of $2 million. The funding will be divided into two phases. “The Army isn’t exactly sure what we want, but we know that we need something in this area.”
Find out how to apply or schedule a call using the SPARTN website: https://aal.army/spartn/ The website also includes an informative PDF with additional information and specifics. Special thanks to the leadership of the ASTM ET CoE for alerting the Exoskeleton Report to this opportunity.