Korea Remakes the Soldier of the Future - HotHardware
Korea Remakes the Soldier of the Future

Korea Remakes the Soldier of the Future

It appears that the military brain trust over in Korea might have seen Iron Man or Star Wars: Clone Wars too many times. It's difficult to say exactly where the inspiration came from for their concept for a new battle-dress uniform (BDU), but it definitely looks like something right out of the realm of science fiction. The Korea Times reported on the concept design for a new BDU and related gear that Korea's Agency for Defense Development (ADD) will allegedly start developing next year.  

"The agency has completed studies on the concept of the future combatant uniform and equipment... From next year, we plan to begin developing related technology and equipment after getting approval from the Defense Acquisition Program Administration.'' -- Unnamed official

 
Credit: The Korea Times
The development of the new BDU and related accessories will be undertaken during two separate phases. The first phase will aim to develop an updated XK11 rifle that features a laser-based rangefinder, thermal imager for night operation, airburst grenade launcher, and the ability to communicate with a heads-up display (HUD). The HUD will reside inside the visor of a bulletproof helmet, and will be able to display information such as the exact range to the intended target. The helmet will include video transmission, long-range communications, and GPS capabilities. Tying all of this together will be a wearable, "portable data-processing equipment," which includes a "friendly-or-foe identification system." Rounding out the first-phase development cycle will be an improved bulletproof vest.

The second phase of equipment development will add automatic temperature adjustment to the BDU as well as protection against nuclear, biological, and chemical (NBC) weapons. The helmet will also be improved with NBC protection.

While Korea develops the BDU and equipment for the soldier of the future, much of this technology already exists today. The NBC protection and temperature control are not too different from what today's astronauts wear in space. Of course, today's pressurized spacesuits are too heavy and bulky to have any practical application on the battlefield, but advances in materials and fabrics development might offer an effective solution. The XK11 rifle concept also bears striking similarity to the U.S.'s own developmental, Objective Individual Combat Weapon (OICW). HUDs are nothing new (not even in helmets) and neither is the concept of carrying around a "Personal Command/Control System"--many of us are already performing a lower-tech version of this with our iPhones and Bluetooth headsets. See you on the battlefield!
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 funny thing is I have seen dummies dressed like this in a couple govt building s I have worked in. You would be surprised at some of the concepts out there. then again I forget the group I am talking to.

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looks kinda goofy.

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I think it's a great idea! Now, they just need to put them on horses for greater mobility and give them swords for crowd control.

Seriously... Wouldn't it be more effective to use robots if your goal is to keep the soldier comfortable and protect every single body part from injury?

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The problem is people could buy one of these suits when developed on the black market and maybe play real-life Halo which is not good for us all Tongue Tied

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tanka12345:

The problem is people could buy one of these suits when developed on the black market and maybe play real-life Halo which is not good for us all Tongue Tied

It already happened in North Hollywood, February 28, 1997.  Two guys vs. 200 officers.  Police had to borrow bigger guns from a local gun shop because the two bankrobbers were not being stopped by their normal weapons.

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3vi1:

tanka12345:

The problem is people could buy one of these suits when developed on the black market and maybe play real-life Halo which is not good for us all Tongue Tied

It already happened in North Hollywood, February 28, 1997.  Two guys vs. 200 officers.  Police had to borrow bigger guns from a local gun shop because the two bankrobbers were not being stopped by their normal weapons.

Wow That is intense. First I ever heard about that.

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Yeah, two guys with body armor and AK-47s were holding off dozens of cops.  The cops only had 9mm pistols which could not penetrate the armor.  But since then they have an M16 in the back of every patrol car, iirc.

As for this Korean thing, it'll only happen if it's inexpensive.  Otherwise it'll cost to much to fit tens of thousands of troops with these.

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Thanks for your input guys! Makes me feel welcome in the forums. Never heard of that story before, it must have been insane (and scary) Indifferent

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