US Department of Defense Wants to Use 5G and AR to Save Warfighter Lives in the Field

The US Department of Defense (DoD) has issued a Request for Prototype Proposal (RPP) to the members of the National Spectrum Consortium (NSC) in support of 5G Telemedicine and Medical Training research and technology development.

To provide the best possible solutions to the DoD, the NSC has invited members of the Medical Technology Enterprise Consortium (MTEC) to review the RPPs and possibly team with proposers from the NSC.

The RPP has two objectives:

  1. The development of a 5G-enabled Augmented Reality (AR) training platform that accommodates multiple trainees under a single trainer/facilitator; and
  2. 5G AR-enabled telementoring for medical procedures, allowing for real-time communication between a mentee in a remote location and a centrally located medical specialist.

Maren Leed, Executive Director of the National Spectrum Consortium said that this initiative represents an exciting opportunity to significantly advance the quality of military care for their warfighters by leveraging the latest developments in 5G and augmented reality. Bringing those technologies to bear will mean US soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines operating in remote locations will be supported by state-of-the-art care. At the same time, DoD's investments will help advance the commercial state-of-the-art when it comes to using AR for medical training and mentoring, benefitting the nation as a whole.

National Spectrum Consortium Chief Strategy Officer, Vice Admiral Joseph Dyer, USN (ret) said that augmented reality has the very real potential to create three-dimensional immersive learning experiences to train and mentor military medical personnel in critical care and trauma scenarios from remote locations. When fully developed and implemented, it will bring medical expertise from anywhere in the world to the battlefield and save lives. He also said that they are excited to see the innovative solutions that NSC and MTEC member teams will offer to DoD in this critically important area of the health and safety of the men and women in uniform.

Request for Prototype Proposal

NSC-21-RPP-06 - 5G Telemedicine and Medical Training -- Members of the NSC in good standing can submit proposals in response to the RPPs. MTEC members are welcome to team with NSC members as part of a proposal team, or if they wish to serve as a prime contractor, to become a member of the NSC. Proposals are due July 21 at 11:59 PM ET.

Spectrum Forward OTA

Last December, the DOD awarded the Spectrum Forward Other Transaction Agreement (OTA) to the National Spectrum Consortium (NSC) to accelerate the development, adoption and deployment of next-generation technologies that provide warfighters a decisive edge on the battlefield.  The OTA has a term of five years and a ceiling value of $2.5 billion. The goal of the Spectrum Forward OTA is to facilitate a partnership between the US technology and industrial base and the US Government to develop or leverage a wide range of dual-use technologies that enhance or rely upon the use of the electromagnetic spectrum, from dynamic spectrum access to machine learning to autonomous navigation to next generation radio access networks. This year, DOD has released several RPPs through the Spectrum Forward OTA related to spectrum sharing in contested environments.