Congress Hears Military Nanotech Plans

June 29, 2001 | Source: UPI

Nanotechnology promises immense gains for the Department of Defense, especially in computers, materials and propulsion, but its benefits are still decades away and likely to be difficult and costly to mass produce, lawmakers were told Tuesday.

DoD plans call for developing advanced materials for embedded computing, composites and so-called “smart materials.” DARPA uses nanotechnology and micro-electromechanical systems or MEMS for a range of purposes. Researchers are developing so-called biofluidic chips. One prototype is a “wristwatch-sized physiological monitor that can acquire body fluids through the skin for measuring blood-gas partial pressures, pH, glucose and hematocrit.”

DARPA also is working on a range of advanced materials, including lightweight body armor.