Thursday, January 24, 2008

UAVs, Terror Drill, FRA/ RU X, + News

'Remote' Possibilities: UAVs Come To Florida

Soldiers from the 53rd Infantry Brigade Combat Team dismantle a Shadow unmanned aerial vehicle at the Armed Forces Reserve Center in Pinellas Park, FL. Photo by TSGT Thomas Kielbasa

1/24/08, St. Augustine, FL —Shadows and Ravens flying over Florida?What sounds like an Edgar Allen Poe cliché is really the future of reconnaissance for Soldiers, as the Florida Army National Guard is beginning to field its first unmanned aerial vehicles.As U.S. forces in Iraq and Afghanistan have increased their use of remote-piloted drones during the past few years, Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) like the Predator have gained notoriety for their ability to enhance battlefield intelligence.Now the Florida Army National Guard is testing two of the smaller UAVs – the Shadow and the Raven – for use with the Infantry and Special Forces.With a wingspan of 12.3 feet, the lightweight Shadow UAV is primarily used by Army brigades for battlefield reconnaissance; the smaller Raven with a 5-foot wingspan is used for reconnaissance by smaller units like battalions or companies. Both operate by remote control and utilize state-of-the-art camera systems to transmit real-time video images to Soldiers on the ground. (Cont...)

It Was Only a Drill: Emergency crews react to terrorist attack, blast
Reports of an explosion and chemical spill at a local paper mill. Injuries, contamination and a toxic cloud on the move. And, at the same time, an armed terrorist targeting Rodman Dam with a biological attack.It was, as the saying goes, only a test.About 75 people participated in the full-scale emergency simulation Wednesday.Members of Putnam County Emergency Management, Putnam County Sheriff’s Office, Palatka Police and Fire Departments, and other agencies worked together to manage the multiple emergencies.
“We are here to challenge local responders and emergency management officials,” said Joseph Garcia, a regional planner at the Northeast Florida Regional Council in Jacksonville.“This will help identify any potential issues and improve plans before an actual event,” he said.The simulation was designed and executed by the regional council, which also conducted preparedness events prior to the 2005 Super Bowl in Jacksonville.

Joint Russian-French naval drill starts in Atlantic
MOSCOW, Jan. 24 (Xinhua) -- Russia and France started a joint naval drill code-named "Passex" in northeastern areas of the Atlantic Ocean on Thursday, Russian news agencies reported.

Security Drill for Super Bowl
Phoenix--Anticipating enhanced homeland Security concerns during Super Bowl week, Army MARS members in Arizona and adjoining states tuned up emergency communications in a joint exercise with the state Division of Emergency Management (AZDEMA) January 19, 2008.
The drill's scenario cited simulated intelligence warnings of a possible
IED (Improvised Explosive Device) attack along five Interstate highways leading to the February 1st game site in Glendale, AZ. AZDEMA Communications Coordinator Jerry Justus KB7UKG monitored the “Hidden Shadow” (simulated terrorist) drill from the state's mobile command center in Phoenix.
MARS participants in Arizona, California and Nevada were tasked with reporting suspicious activity to the AZDEMA's special Super Bowl Task Force. Arizona Army MARS Director Pat O'Brien AB7AZ (MARS call AAA9AZ) reported the 35 participating ham operators filed 76 information messages to the state mobile command post by WinLink digital and HF voice.

Report: Army's Future Combat System plagued by software problems

Emergent BioSolutions In Joint Venture With 9Bio

PUTRAJAYA, Jan 24 (Bernama) -- US-based Emergent BioSolutions Inc and Ninebio Sdn Bhd (9Bio) have forged a joint venture to focus on creating critical biologics infrastructure and supplying biodefence counter-measures, including anthrax vaccine and other complementary products and services to the government.The joint venture is also expected to supply similar products and services to member countries of the Organisation of Islamic Conference (OIC) as well as others within Asia.9Bio is a government-owned company and one of the national health institutes under the Health Ministry.The government through 9Bio, has selected Emergent BioSolutions as one of its principal partners to assist in vaccine development and manufacturing infrastructure.According to 9Bio chief executive officer Dr Nor Shahidah Khairullah, the joint venture was a step towards achieving the objectives of obtaining vaccine development and manufacturing capabilities as well as bioterrorism preparedness......

2008 ASM Biodefense and Emerging Disease Research Meeting
The American Society for Microbiology (ASM) will host its 2008 Biodefense and Emerging Diseases Research Meeting February 24-27, 2008 at the Baltimore Marriott Waterfront Hotel in Baltimore, MD.
There is a continuing need for research that helps better protect the public against not only the traditional agents of bioterrorism, like anthrax, but also against emerging infectious diseases that hold the potential for serious human and economic harm, such as H5N1 influenza. In 2006 the federal government budgeted approximately $4 billion for biodefense research and preparedness and last year created the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority, designed to help speed the development of biodefense countermeasures using an estimated funding of $1 billion dollars in fiscal year 2008....

Bases compete for Cyber Command


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