The U.S. Army has spent the last decade working on a technology advanced enough to give their soldiers, real fighters, capabilities like you’ve only seen in Call of Duty or Halo. Now, they’re ready to unveil TAR, an augmented reality headset no enemy will be able to hide from #realitymagic
TAR is short for tactical augmented reality heads-up display. It’s a prototype devised by the United States CERDEC, ARL, ERDC and NSRDEC departments. Its goal is to give soldiers more leverage on the field. Coupled with multiple sensors, it can show precious data in front of their eyes, on an intelligent visor. Things like GPS maps, night vision, data concerning targets are going to be available at a simple touch.
Of course, they could have taken a shortcut and modified a Hololens but the whole process would have been more laborious. The field of view of the Microsoft device is not big enough for tactical applications and doesn’t offer enough brightness to see info in special environments like in the middle of the desert during the day or on a field covered in snow.
TAR, though, allows colored images to be seen on even the brightest backgrounds thanks to increased contrast feature. With a simple touch, a soldier can visualize the foreground and background (in split view), the distance to a moving object, its connection to the team (whether it’s friendly or not) or the plan of a building, plus link his weapon with the visor.
There’s no word on the first date or real event where soldiers will test the headsets. But don’t be surprised if you see similar technology hitting the market soon – Applied Research Associates, who worked previously with DARPA on an AR program, are planning to bring their tech to the gaming and social media world.