Obama has decided to send 30,000 more troops to Afghanistan. Will they come home with no legs? Our brave soldiers are coming home from war with missing limbs because the humvees they drive through the desert are not adequately shielded from the main terrorism weapon, which are IEDs (improvised explosive devices), otherwise known as homemade bombs, which are left on the roadside and detonated by remote control as US troops drive by. We finally doing something about this problem.

A new concept that is to build military vehicles around a protected personnel compartment and use a sacrificial “blast wedge” to absorb energy from improvised explosive devices. Engineers have designed and tested the concept, called ULTRA II, for the US military. A blast test conducted with the ULTRA II full-sized crew compartment showed that the new concept could protect the vehicle crew from improvised explosions.

The ULTRA II crew compartment is designed to house six persons: a driver and commander facing forward, and two pairs of crew members behind them, each pair facing opposite sides of the vehicle. By putting their backs toward the center of the crew compartment, the design moves the crew away from the outside walls to reduce the likelihood of injury from side blasts, provides better visibility for the crew to monitor their surroundings, and allows for faster exit from the vehicle.

Mankind may be older than we think, so it’s way past time for us to face the facts about what’s really going on. Why weren’t humvees reinforced this way before: Was the administration that started these wars trying to save money by sacrificing our soldiers? That attitude has finally changed: Engineer Kevin Massey says, “The bottom line is saving people’s lives and protecting them from injury.”

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