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Warfighter Panel Addresses Needs at ONR S&T Conference

Navy NewsStand

Story Number: NNS080817-02
Release Date: 8/17/2008 7:48:00 AM

By Peter Vietti, Office of Naval Research Public Affairs

ARLINGTON, Va. (NNS) -- The Naval Science and Technology (S&T) Partnership Conference closed Aug. 14 in Arlington, Va., wrapping up with a discussion on the future role of emerging technologies in support the warfighter.

Organized by the Office of Naval Research, the conference assembled an expert panel of military and civilians to discuss emerging threats and challenges and ways to out-think and out-adapt the enemy. They addressed equipment, communications, vehicle and platform improvements and the need for enhanced training to remove social, cultural and language barriers.

Retired Marine Corps Col. Jim Lasswell, technical director of the Marine Corps Warfighting Lab, affirmed that his organization is searching for one technology silver bullet. He stated, "There's a dire need for an instant language translation device that would assist Marines and soldiers when they go eyeball to eyeball with local inhabitants in foreign countries".

The panel discussion also touched on the USMC Center for Irregular Warfare's initiative to find and engage the enemy and the local population in war zones. Center director, Col. Dan Kelly said, "this effort allows the troops to disrupt the adversary and better understand the operational and cultural aspects of the region."

ONR officials also pointed out that they are pursuing a variety of programs to benefit the warfighter including infantry immersion training, an urban training center that virtually captures the sights, sounds and smells of a combat zone village or town by employing realistic behavior of enemy combatants.

The Department of the Navy's Office of Naval Research (ONR) provides the science and technology necessary to maintain the Navy and Marine Corps' technological warfighting dominance. Through its affiliates, ONR is a leader in Science and Technology with engagement in 50 states, 70 countries, 1035 institutions of higher learning, and 914 private industry partners. ONR employs approximately 1,170 people, comprised of uniformed, civilian and contract personnel.

For more news from Office of Naval Research, visit www.navy.mil/local/onr/.

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