FLC News

Navy Develops 3-D Sniper Software Tools

Sniper RT Graphic 1
[caption id="attachment_9755" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Model of Camp Pendleton viewed in Sniper-RT®. The viewpoint is at the center of the six-arm dragger. Areas within a direct line of sight are colored red. Areas with headrooms of 0-to-2 meters are colored yellow. Note lines of sight through the tunnel. When the viewpoint is moved by a mouse, the color-coded viewshed changes in real time and in three dimensions."]Model of Camp Pendleton viewed in Sniper-RT®. [/caption] The Naval Research Laboratory (NRL) has developed a mission planning and training/simulation software tool for sniper/counter-sniper missions; special recon; force protection; personnel security; and sensor, camera, and mine placement. By asking the questions "what can I see?" and "from where can I be seen?", the tool graphically indicates areas visible to observers at known positions in a 3-dimensional (3-D) scene, as well as positions from which these observers can be seen. The software uses digital 3-D terrain data to determine and display these locations. Additional features include custom range rings/grids, multiple viewpoints, limited field-of-view angles, threat coverage, and protectee scenarios. This utility can also be used for geospatial intelligence and determining viewsheds (an area of land, water, or other environmental element that is visible to the human eye from a fixed vantage point) in architectural design. The Navy Sniper/Counter-Sniper™ software tool is currently formatted as an Autodesk Maya plug-in. The Sniper-RT® software tool is a stand-alone application and can be deployed on any laptop with a medium-level graphics card, with best performance with a 2+ core processor (no other hardware, software, licensing, or training preconditions are required). Both software tools are in use by a federal law enforcement agency and the U.S. intelligence community (IC). The feature that distinguishes these software tools from currently available commercial line-of-sight (LOS) software applications is the true 3-D line-of-sight capability inside buildings and through windows, doors, tunnels, towers, power lines, vehicles, ships, aircraft, etc. All surfaces are color-coded, including interiors, under bridges and overhangs, vertical surfaces, etc. The color-coding is produced as imagery that can be saved or viewed real-time from any angle. Sniper-RT® renders in real time, while Sniper/Counter-Sniper™ can render an image in as fast as four seconds. The technology supports animating snipers/targets/protectees to create custom convoy animations. Applications include high-value security; sniper/counter-sniper mission planning and training for military, law enforcement, and SWAT; covert ingress/egress and reconnaissance; convoy/protectee planning; force protection; and general threat assessment. Additionally, applications include viewshed determination for geospatial intelligence, architectural design, placement of video surveillance cameras and sensors, correctional facilities, etc. For more information on either technology, contact Rita Manak, Technology Transfer Office, Naval Research Laboratory, 202-767-3083. For full-size graphic, please click here.
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