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UMFK to host MIT Broadcast entitled "Technology and the Future Warrior: Protecting Soldiers in the 21st Century"

September 10, 2004

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The University of Maine at Fort Kent will be hosting an MIT Enterprise Forum satellite broadcast on Thursday, September 23 at 7:00 p.m. in the Nadeau Hall Teleconference Room.

The topic for the upcoming broadcast is "Technology and the Future Warrior: Protecting Soldiers in the 21st Century". The broadcast will detail the ground-breaking work being done via MIT's Institute of Soldier Nanotechnology (ISN) and the Army's Future Force Warrior Technology Program Office (FFWTPO), while also touching on how entrepreneurs can be at the forefront of these kinds of developments and technologies.

The United States military spends billions of dollars developing aircraft, ships and weapons systems, but its most valuable resource is its soldiers. Through rapid advances in new and developing technologies like autonomous battle suits, ultra far-forward medical care, wearable computers and miniaturization, the U.S. Army is looking to increase the protection and survivability of the men and women in uniform. Best of all, there is lots of government money available to look for solutions.

Moderating the broadcast is Steve Altes, a 1984 graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology where he earned a bachelor degree and two master degrees. He is the co-recipient of the National Medal of Technology, the nation's highest award for engineering achievement, for his work on Pegasus, the world's first privately-developed space launch vehicle.

Altes is the author of two books and his work has appeared in such places as Salon, Washington Post, Los Angeles Times, and the Christian Science Monitor.

Speakers include Ned Thomas, director of the Institute of Soldier Nanotechnologies, and Jean-Louis "Dutch" DeGay, an equipment specialist and director of outreach for the U.S. Army's FFWTPO since 2001. They will provide an overview of the cutting edge work being done in areas like ballistics and blast protection, chemical resistance, low power electronics and more.

The program promises to be a fascinating insight into the future of the military, thanks to technology. The event is a "must attend" for everyone interested in learning about business opportunities and technology trends in "protecting the warrior in the 21st Century".

A social/network hour will begin at 6:00 p.m. in order for participants to make a connection.

The broadcasts are offered by UMFK as part of its continuing effort to provide information to the business community of the St. John Valley region and to the campus community.

They are made possible through the cooperation and generous support of the Finance Authority of Maine, the MIT Club of Maine, and in cooperation with the Center for Entrepreneurship and Small Business of the University of Southern Maine.

The broadcast is free, however registration is required. For more information or to register, contact the office of Robert Scott, vice president of academic affairs and dean of faculty at 834-7509.