HRL in Phase III Development of World's First "Cognitive-Neural" Binocular Threat-Warning System

MALIBU, Calif., May 23, 2011—Researchers at HRL Laboratories, LLC, announced today they have received a Phase III, 15-month contract from the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) to continue groundbreaking work on the CT2WS program, or Cognitive Technology Threat Warning System—the world’s first and only “cognitive-neural” binocular threat-detection technology.

The head-worn system combines an ultra-wide-field-of-view video sensor and sophisticated cognitive visual-processing algorithms that model how the human visual cortex scans complex scenes while actually monitoring and decoding the operator's brain signals in real time through electroencephalogram (EEG). The technology could significantly improve warfighter situational awareness in a variety of operations, including reconnaissance, force protection surveillance and standard infantry tactical fighting.

HRL and a team of industry and university partners are developing CT2WS. During field tests under desert and tropical conditions held this year as part of Phase II, CT2WS outperformed human state-of-the-art binocular experts.

“Because CT2WS uses the operator’s ‘brain-in-the-loop,’ it detects threats that are context-specific and operator-specific, making it applicable and adaptable to a variety of conditions,” explained Dr. Deepak Khosla, senior scientist in HRL’s Information System Sciences Laboratory and program manager for CT2WS.

Phase III efforts will focus on advancing the system’s cognitive-neural algorithms, measuring and reducing operator workload, and will culminate with field tests and technology transfer demonstrations at various defense test ranges.

CT2WS is featured on CNN as one of several “Far-out battle tech” systems.


HRL Laboratories, LLC, Malibu, California ( is a corporate research-and-development laboratory owned by The Boeing Company and General Motors specializing in research into sensors and materials, information and systems sciences, applied electromagnetics, and microelectronics. HRL provides custom research and development and performs additional R&D contract services for its LLC member companies, the U.S. government, and other commercial companies.

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