The Military Is Building Long-Range Facial Recognition That Works in the Dark

An anonymous reader shares a report: The U.S. military is spending more than $4.5 million to develop facial recognition technology that reads the pattern of heat being emitted by faces in order to identify specific people. The technology would work in the dark and across long distances, according to contracts posted on a federal spending database. Facial recognition is already employed by the military, which uses the technology to identify individuals on the battlefield. But existing facial recognition technology typically relies on images generated by standard cameras, such as those found in iPhone or CCTV networks.

Now, the military wants to develop a facial recognition system that analyzes infrared images to identify individuals. The Army Research Lab has previously publicized research in this area, but these contracts, which started at the end of September 2019 and run until 2021, indicate the technology is now being actively developed for use in the field. “Sensors should be demonstrable in environments such as targets seen through automotive windshield glass, targets that are backlit, and targets that are obscured due to light weather (e.g., fog),” the Department of Defense indicated when requesting proposals.

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