1 Smart dust refers to tiny, wireless networks of sensors. The smart dust detects data about light, temperatures or vibrations and transmits that data to larger computer systems.2 Major (Retd.
) R.K. Sharma, Military Uses of Nanotechnology (Sumit Enterprises, 2013), p. 35. 3 International Journal of Engineering Science & Advanced Technology (IJESAT), Military Nanotechnology by Anupam Tiwari http://ijesat.org/Volumes/2012_Vol_02_Iss_04/IJESAT_2012_02_04_09.pdf , p.826.
4 Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, Monograph by Sanjiv Tomar https://idsa.in/monograph/nanotechnology-emerging-field-for-future-military-applications , p.42. Nanocrystalline composite is a system formed by small monocrystals sized in the range of 3–5 nm, which are embedded in a suitable amorphous matrix with thin intercrystalline borders of about 0.3 nm. 5 Ibid p.44.Graphene is a thin layer of pure carbon having tightly packed layer of carbon atoms that are bonded together in a hexagonal honeycomb lattice.
Layers of graphene stacked on top of each other form graphite, with an inter-planar spacing of 0.335 nanometres.6 Ibid p.53.7 Major (Retd.) R.
K. Sharma, Military Uses of Nanotechnology (Sumit Enterprises, 2013), p. 34.
8 Institute for Defence Studies and Analyses, Monograph by Sanjiv Tomar https://idsa.in/monograph/nanotechnology-emerging-field-for-future-military-applications , p.51. 9 Ibid p.58.
(h) Nanotechnology for Logistics Use of technology in logistics is focused on two issues—how to enhance safety and security of transported goods and how to improve the speed and efficiency of the logistic chain. 9 NT will play important role in future logistic by tracking of supplies using miniature sensors, utra-wide band tag and radio frequency identification (RFID).Sensors to monitor overall conditions of the stores and during transportation will help in optimal utilization of the goods. NT will be helpful in achieving the fully automated supply chains which can timely deliver the materials as per the requirements of troops at desired place. (g) Nano Bio-Technology Nano bio-technology finds most promising future in the field of medical science. Its military application will have most profound impact on the on-site diagnosis and drug delivery for the wounded soldier.
The health of the war fighter can be monitored continuously in real time environment by pumping nanosensors in the body. Nanobots can be used to diagnose the disease by inserting them through blood stream and they would also deliver the required amount of drug dosage for fast recovery of damaged tissues. (f) Nanotechnology for Sensor Applications Sensors are primarily devices which find their utility in almost all the military equipment. NT is playing a vital role in realization of nano sensors which have small size, low power requirement and high selectivity. Military applications for nano sensors are immense. The use of nano sensors for health monitoring of soldiers in the battlefield, detection of mines and explosives, detection of nuclear, biological and chemical agents, battlefield surveillance, monitoring of equipment health at crucial points, logistics and supply chain management. The most important military application of sensors can be realized through Wireless Nano Sensor Network (WNSN).8 The use of CNTs based electro-chemical sensors, smart dust and Nano-bots highlighted the importance of nanotechnology in sensor applications.
(e) Nanotechnology for Aeronautics Future aerial vehicles, unmanned devices and missiles are expected to be lightweight, high speed and maneuverable, enhanced endurance, intelligence guided, low in radar, thermal and visual signature and low in fuel consumption. NT enabled aerial platforms are made of nano composites with low radar cross section. “Argonide” using aluminum nanoparticles, argonide has created rocket propellants that burn at double the rate. Nanographide nanosilica is used in gaskets for aircraft. Nano fabrics are used for Arrester barrier and tail parachute for fighter aircraft. Nanochromium is used for corrosion resistant.7 (d) Nanotechnology for Military Communication Advancement in military communication capabilities allow the soldier to be connected at all times to the centric warfare system, his commander, the distributed sensor network on the battlefield and his fellow soldiers.
NT can enhance the capabilities of military communication hardware through advanced chip design and advanced electronic packaging methods. The use on NT in information and communications technology (ICT) can lead to higher storage capacity, fast data processing, low power requirement and miniaturization of devices.6 (c) Nanotechnology for Weapons The developments in weapons technology focus on precision targeting, light weight, optimal impact, safety, intelligent- guided, minimum signature, high speed and adaptive lethal and non-lethal weapons or weapon platforms. Future smart weapons are also expected to be equipped with advanced sensors and better targeting guidance.
NT developments can be used to reduce the size and weight of various weapon systems and also enhance their capabilities. It also enables in making high impact ammunition with high energetic nano composite materials, high energetic propellants using nano dispersed aluminum as propellant agent, small and efficient directed energy weapons etc. The explosives developed using NT will ensure increase destructive force with reduced weight, allowing for lighter, more energetic payloads. (b) Nanotechnology for Military Vehicles Future military vehicles are expected to be lightweight, multipurpose, low in fuel consumption, intelligent guided and should have improved armour protection, upgraded surveillance sensors, adaptive structures and advanced integrated weapon and communication systems. NT is crucial to achieve all these functionalities with the development of nano fiber reinforced antiballistic structures, hybrid and electric powering, Nanodyne ( tungsten- carbide –cobalt compostite powder with grain size less than 15 nm),3 Nanocrystalline composite coating material,4 fuel cells using graphene coated with carbon nanoparticles5 etc. Use of NT can significantly enhance the efficiency of the sub systems and overall performance of a vehicle fleet. and improved situational awareness for soldier in battle field environment by using CNT, nano energetic materials (nEMS), exoskeleton, smart dust1 etc . The future development of nano combat suit using nano fabrics, nano electronics, nano robotics, miniaturized hardware for different sensors, displays and radio transmitters , wearable nano electric power and nano bio fusion to address health issues enables to fabricate smart uniforms with all the functionalities mentioned earlier.
Soldier capabilities can be enhanced by NT with strong, lightweight materials for soldier systems and system components adaptive, multifunctional materials for soldier systems and system components novel detection and protection schemes for bio/chemical warfare threats and identification of friend or foe.2(a) Nanotechnology For The Soldier The human centric systems to secure and enhance performance of soldier are in development. NT enables better survivability, mobility, self-supporting ability