The Defence Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA) is always attempting to make military vehicles safer for soldiers. Protecting them in the modern wars like Afghanistan and Iraq has been far harder than one would have thought, and this has necessitated a complete overhaul of how these machines are built.
Jalopnik recently reported on one of the major technological innovations DARPA is working on and it's incredibly cool, even if you aren't interested in military vehicles. This particular creation reinvents the wheel quite literally! This new piece of tech is a wheel that can change shapes, going from round and traditional looking, to triangular. This, in theory, should allow the vehicle it's equipped to traverse a greater number of terrain types while also keeping the occupants safe from modern-day artillery.
This is just one of the many innovations that DARPA's Ground X-Vehicle program is aiming at tackling. All of these new ideas will go towards making military operations safer and more efficient for those involved. Some of the changes include the reduction of vehicle size and weight by 50 percent, increasing the speed of vehicles by 100 percent, reduce the number of personnel needed on a vehicle, increase the number of terrains that are accessible by 95 percent and technology that will make vehicles harder for enemies to detect. Those are lofty ambitions, to say the least.
With this and the HUMVEE that is being developed, the number of military innovations that are being showcased on the vehicle front is simply staggering, and while the chances that these make it to the civilian market are very low, they are definitely cool to see on both a theoretical level and in practicality.
These innovations do at least have a chance to see use in future warfare, will they be able to keep soldiers safe? Obviously, in those situations, safety is no guarantee, but every little bit does help. Also with these new vehicles, military personnel will not be caught as unprepared as they were in the past with inadequate protection from armored vehicles.