Israel earlier this week unveiled an innovative program, called “Edge of Tomorrow,” which is expected to revolutionize the concept of combat soldiers.
The Defense Research and Development Directorate (DDR&D) of the Ministry of Defense developed the program with Elbit Systems, one of the leading companies producing defense electronics in Israel.
The program integrates networked warfare technologies for each soldier on an infantry team and aims to improve the combat team’s modern urban warfare, according to the Department of Defense.
“‘Edge of Tomorrow’ is an innovative program that is extremely unique thanks to our shift in perspective,” Lt. Col. Shlomi Buskila, head of the DDR&D LWSOF branch, said in a statement.
“The program aims to enable optimal operational value for combat soldiers of the ground forces by enhancing the synergy between them and their team. The program integrates a wide range of advanced technologies used by the soldiers and their teams, leading to a well greater than the sum of its parts.”
Mayan Lazarovich, spokesperson for the Department of Defense, said the program was “a multi-year effort that has continuously improved soldiers’ lethality, survivability, situational awareness, endurance and more. of infantry”.
An industry source, who provided a detailed explanation of the plan, described it as a combination of a collection of wearable technologies with many connected subsystems.
He said there will be specialized suits for each type of soldier on a team. “There are different roles within a team, so everyone has their specific suit and everything is connected. There will be a soldier costume, a commander costume, a sniper costume, etc.,” said he declared.
The source added that this set of technologies includes many different devices such as display glasses, a sleeve that helps transmit information within the group, computerized rifles, night vision systems, a component that can help to carry weight and fire detection capability. “The soldier can wear a very small device that can sense the direction of hostile fire so that it can be generated very quickly and very effectively,” he said.
He added that looking back between 50 and 100 years, there were only incremental changes in the technological capabilities provided to an infantry soldier.
Now, he said, “what we’re talking about is actually radical change trying to bring about, you know, real transformation technologically speaking. We look at the infantry soldier and at the team level.
He said the plan will improve the individual infantry soldier and the team as a whole: “Not just a better rifle, a better weapon, better night vision goggles, but we look at it as an overall capability.”
Lazarovich said the plan is still being worked on and the timing of the program’s launch is still uncertain.
“The Edge of Tomorrow is a development-oriented program. Decisions about launching the program will be made in the future,” she said.