LAAD: Technology for Citizen Security
By Dialogo April 01, 2011very interesting !
It took awhile, but the Brazilian Army created a bulletproof vest for dogs
who, like their human counterparts, risk their lives in dangerous missions for the
Armed Forces and Military Police.
The life vest for dogs, developed by the same company that produces light
armored vehicles and saltwater purifying backpacks, used technology developed 100
percent in Brazil. The vests were one of many new products showcased during the
Latin America Aero & Defense Conference 2011, or LAAD, which took place April
12-15 in Rio de Janeiro.
Held biennially, LAAD is a renowned meeting place for government officials
and major manufacturers from Brazilian and worldwide defense industries.
High-ranking officials from the navies, armies, and air forces of Latin American
countries and other regions also join companies specializing in providing equipment
and services to the armed forces, police, special operation forces, security
services, consultants and government agencies. This year, approximately 550
companies from more than 55 countries participated at LAAD. Traditional exhibitors
hailed from Argentina, England, France, Germany, India, Israel, Italy, Russia, South
Africa, Spain, Turkey and the United States. For the first time, China, Singapore,
Slovakia, Finland, Norway, Portugal and Taiwan participated.
DEFENSE AND PUBLIC SAFETY ON THE AGENDA LAAD marked its eighth edition by
expanding the space dedicated to public safety. Citizen safety has increasingly been
integrated into Brazil’s security discussions, especially in view of the major
sporting events that will be held in the country, such as the 2014 World Cup and the
2016 Olympic Games.
One of the high-tech and nonlethal artifacts introduced at LADD was the first
Brazilian-developed taser, called Spark, that has a 10-meter range. Spark can be
used by the armed forces, the police, the municipal guards, penitentiary agents and
private authorized security companies. Brazilian Army Col. Edson Pereira, training
manager for the manufacturer, explained that “the low voltage used by the electric
shock released by the weapon guarantees the nonlethality.”
The same company introduced the Soft Punch, a 10 mm rubber bullet launcher
that can be used for close (5 to 10 meters) confrontations. A representative told
Diálogo that the launcher was already purchased by the United Nations for use by
peacekeeping troops in Haiti.
Another nonlethal technology that attracted buzz during LAAD was a glue spray
that now comes in different colors, including red and green. According to the
manufacturer, the spray comes in “models that leave a rotten onion smell on the
assailant, even after he cleans up,” making it easier for the police to find the
criminal. The low temperature of the spray, 10 to 15 degrees Celsius, also causes an
itching sensation. Its effects last up to 48 hours. Each package includes antidotes
that remove the glue without harming the skin. The product was tested for the first
time in March 2011 during the Brazil concerts of Colombian singer Shakira; according
to the company’s manager, Leonardo Santana, the spray was “very well
UAVs DISCUSSED Many different Unmanned Aerial Vehicles, or UAVs, were
introduced during LAAD, varying from models that fit in the palm of a hand to models
as big as a trans-Atlantic airplane. An entire seminar, conducted parallel to the
event, focused on UAVs and related legislation — or lack thereof — in the
General Luiz Cláudio Ribeiro da Silva, air lieutenant brigadier of the
Brazilian Air Force, and director of the Department of Air Traffic Control, said
that “the goal of the aviation agencies of many countries is to have legislation
that integrates the UAVs’ flights with manned ones, but that is not possible yet due
to security reasons.”
Among the themes that still need to be discussed, Gen. Ribeiro da Silva said,
is the creation of an exclusive frequency track for these kinds of operations.
Another concern is the qualification of the UAVs’ controllers. “Only pilots with a
combined knowledge of national and international rules and regulations should be
granted authorization to control a UAV,” he concluded.