SSC-Natick Press ReleaseU.S. Army Soldier Systems
Public Affairs Office
Contact: Chief, Public Affairs Office
Date: April 12, 2007
Anthropology Group showcases lab improvements
Peng Li, a computer programmer from SAIC working for the Ergonomics Team, shows what a 3D scan looks like. (Photo by Public Affairs Office.)
Click for Larger Photo
NATICK, Mass. -- On March 14, the Anthropology Group within the
Ergonomics Team from the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research,
Development and Engineering Center held an open house to showcase
renovations made to the 3D lab and to discuss how capabilities of 3D
human body scanning can assist with development of clothing and
equipment systems for the Warfighter.
The lab came into use approximately 10 years ago, said Steven
Paquette, anthropology coordinator and acting team leader,
Ergonomics Team. The idea was to use 3D scan measurements to help
size and evaluate body armor and other individual equipment. Now,
that vision keeps growing.
Some new areas discussed during the open house included the
Integrated Database for Engineering Anthropometry of Soldiers
(IDEAS), which was initially developed as part of the Uniform System
for Improved Tariffs (USFIT) program.
The USFIT program is working to provide 3D whole-body anthropometric
scanners at installations with large troop concentrations to aid in
sizing and issuing clothing and equipment. These 3D scans and
associated anthropometric data will be archived in IDEAS along with
existing 3D data from previous studies. The information from IDEAS
will provide Soldier body size information to the materiel
developers for current and next generation clothing and equipment
system requirements, including the determination of sizing
requirements for Future Combat Systems.
Another program being worked on in conjunction with the U.S. Army
Research Institute of Environmental Medicine is a study to see if
extracting 3D scan data can assist the Army with measuring body fat.
"Body fat impacts not only items, such as clothing sizes, but also
health," said Todd Garlie, research anthropologist. "The Army
currently uses circumferences to measure body fat and people can get
misidentified [as over- or under-weight]."
The current method can be very time consuming and the use of scan
data could significantly reduce the time spent measuring Soldiers.
The Anthropology Group is working in conjunction with the University
of South Australia on this program. In addition, they are working
with the United States Military Academy in order to be able to
increase their collection data.
Brian Corner, research anthropologist, described some of the
improvements to the 3D anthropology lab. All the scanners had full
maintenance done on them, he said, and received upgrades of new
electronics and hardware where needed.
"Within the next month, we also will be getting a brand new head
scanner with much greater coverage and resolution than our current
12-year-old scanner," Corner continued, "which we are very excited
Other improvements include a new changing room so that personnel who
are about to be scanned don't need to walk down the hall to the
restrooms, and a large display monitor.
A hit with the personnel from the installation who visited the open
house was getting their own 3D body scans done and being able to see
them on the display monitor.
Some were even able to get their scans emailed to them.
This page last updated on 10 May 2006.