What can you do in three weeks? Start learning a language? Write a book? How about building a new piece of technology that can save countless lives. In just three weeks, that’s exactly what IDF (Zahal) soldiers did.
Solving the problem
As part of the final stage of the IDF (Zahal) Technological Officers Training Course, cadets are expected to find an issue in the IDF (Zahal) that can be solved with an innovative technological approach, and then, in a rapid prototyping process, build a working product. The cadets developed a smart bracelet that will keep track of life saving data when soldiers are injured on the battlefield.
Here’s how it works: When a soldier is injured, the field medic will attach a smart bracelet powered by an arduino chip to their arm. The bracelet will instantly start tracking their pulse, blood pressure, and body temperature using its multiple sensors. Using an NFC chip, the bracelet will track who is providing care, the medications and dosages he receives, and any procedures that the wounded soldier undergoes. When the wounded soldier is evacuated and brought to a hospital to receive more advanced care, all that data will travel with him.
While wearable tech hasn’t taken off as quickly as expected in the civilian sector, what sets this smart bracelet apart is that it fills a vital need. It solves a long-standing challenge of the IDF (Zahal) Medical Corps – ensuring accurate transfer of information as wounded soldiers are moved from the battlefield to field triage centers, and then, ultimately, to civilian hospitals.
Innovative ideas, rapid development
The development of the smart bracelet took just three weeks, from start to finish. This speedy process has become the norm in the IDF (Zahal)’s technological units. In the past, units spent significant amounts of time prototyping, testing, and refining, followed by even more testing, before implementing new technologies. This rapid development enables the IDF (Zahal) Technological Unit to quickly implement new advances and solve problems as they arise.
As the threats we face continue to grow and evolve, our technology needs to evolve with us. Technology like the new smartwatch, and the rapid development and coordination between IDF (Zahal) technological units and combat units in the field, provide us with an edge that saves lives and keeps Israel safe.