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The US Army is developing augmented reality (AR) goggles for military dogs to assist soldiers during operations.
The goggles, which are funded by the army, are being developed by the Seattle-based company Command Sight. According to its developers, the device will allow military canines to easily receive and follow commands from their handlers even from a distance.
Military dogs typically receive instructions from their handlers through hand signals or laser pointers. Handlers also use portable radios with cameras, which can sometimes confuse the dogs and potentially endanger soldiers. With the AR goggles, dog handlers will be able to see from their animal’s point of view and give easy-to-understand instructions.
The goggles are still in the works, but Command Sight has already created a prototype after modifying regular protective goggles that military dogs use on missions. The team equipped these goggles with an electronic display so the dogs can see visual cues meant to guide and direct them.
The AR goggles are connected to a computer that shows what the dog is looking at. Military dog handlers operating the computer can click anywhere on the screen, sending a signal to the AR goggles and directing the dog’s attention to a specific place.
Command Sight founder AJ Peper said that it might take some time before the AR goggles can be used in the field. However, he believes that the technology can revolutionize how dogs are deployed for military operations once it becomes commercially available.