Army Looks to Tap Commercial Techs Through Mad Scientist Initiative

Jeff Brody

The U.S. Army is working on an initiative to gather industry and academia to help the service understand emerging technologies that could support troops in the future, National Defense Magazine reported Friday. The Army announced the plans during a recent conference for its Mad Scientist initiative at the University of Texas-Austin. 

Lee Grubbs, director of Army Mad Scientist, said the initiative seeks to utilize the commercial industry. Experts attending the Mad Scientist conference discussed technologies to deter enemy detection systems, improved communications for drones, integrating AI into military systems, GPS interference and hypersonic vehicles.

“The explosion in biology is not something that’s happening in a DoD lab,” he said. “It’s originating in commercial labs looking for where there might be profit — artificial intelligence, autonomy, robotics. Mad Scientist [isn’t] just conferences,” Grubbs said. “It is a full-time exploration of the operational environment from today to the future.”

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