Tracking Military Operations in Urban Terrain


April 2011

Q-Track demonstrated a Location-Aware Combat Identification (LACID) system for blue force tracking. The LACID system employs Q-Track’s Near-Field Electromagnetic Ranging (NFER®) Real-Time Location System (RTLS).  The demonstration used locator-receivers deployed around the training range and a number of FCC Part 15 compliant low-power transmit tags. After a short calibration, the LACID system successfully tracked tagged soldiers throughout the training area.  Location error was typically no more than 1m (3ft) outside and inside of the steel reinforced concrete block multistory buildings.

Q-Track’s NFER® systems benefit from the long wavelengths (typically 300m) of low frequencies (typically around 1MHz).  The long wavelengths easily penetrate foliage and buildings, making the Q-Track solution highly robust. Operating in the “near field,” within about one-third of a wavelength, NFER® systems can track tags inside buildings, even with the receivers placed outside the buildings.  Thus, NFER® systems can provide a comprehensive situational awareness tool for military operations or training with a low infrastructure cost.

Q-Track pioneered low frequency, near-field indoor wireless location systems to solve challenging problems ranging from worker location and safety to supply chain management.  Q-Track’s patented NFER® technology tracks workers in nuclear power facilities, and forklifts in warehouses, among many other applications.

This video and the underlying demonstration at an U.S. Army MOUT facility was prepared using Q-Track IR&D funds with the voluntary assistance of actors who are U.S. Army personnel.  Neither the U.S. Army nor any personal affiliated with the U.S. Army make any warranty, express or implied, or assumes any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, completeness, or usefulness of any information disclosed. Reference herein to any specific commercial product, process, or service by trade name, trademark, manufacturer, or otherwise does not necessarily constitute or imply its endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the U.S. Army.