The Army has postponed the scheduled date for the distribution of innovative Microsoft-developed goggles. To fill the maintenance gap created by 2,000 fewer troops, the Army hired contractors. (AP Photo/Maya Alleruzzo) Maya Alleruzzo
Army delays distribution of advanced high-tech goggles to soldiers
Mike Brest October 17, 07:00 AM October 17, 07:00 AM
The Army has postponed the scheduled date for the distribution of innovative Microsoft-developed goggles.
The Integrated Visual Augmentation System, which is based on the company’s HoloLens technology, is designed to help soldiers see through smoke and darkness, provide a three-dimensional battlefield map and target acquisition, and translate foreign languages.
“The Army decided to shift the IVAS Operational Test and fielding to a date later in FY22,” read a Thursday press release from the Program Executive Office Soldier. “The Army is fully committed to its partnership with Microsoft to advance specific technologies to meet operational requirements and maximize warfighter impact.”
The new technology was supposed to be given to soldiers this year, but it will now not be given out until next September.
“This changes how we operate honestly,” Sgt. Philip Bartel with 1-2 Striker Brigade Combat Team said in a February press release about the technology. “Now guys aren’t hanging out of vehicles in dangerous situations trying to get views on what’s going on. Leadership will be able to maneuver their elements and get view on target without having to leave the safety of their armored vehicles. Maneuvering elements with that kind of information will minimize casualties and will overall drastically change how we operate and increase our effectiveness on the battlefield.”
The goggles allow soldiers wearing them to “see through” a vehicle to identify “what its external sensors are feeding into the individual” goggles.
Sgt. John Martin, bradley master gunner from 3rd Infantry Division, in the February release said the goggle technology is something many soldiers never expected to be around while they were still in the service.
“This is something that none of us [imagined] we would see in our careers,” he explained. “It’s futuristic technology that we’ve all talked about and seen in movies and video games, but it’s something that we never [imagined] we would have the chance to fight with. It’s definitely technology that we are really excited to use as soon as they can get it to us.”
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