from the small-arms dept.
For a detailed look at what short-term applications the U.S. Army sees for nanotechnology, you can take a look at the proceedings of a Workshop on Nanoscience for the Soldier, which was held by the Army Research Office at the North Carolina Biotechnology Center in Durham, NC, in early February.
The work shop marked the start of a program announced by the U.S. Army to create a University Affiliated Research Center (UARC), with industry partners, to develop nanometer-scale science and technology solutions that could be incorporated into a soldier's gear. That could be a uniform that monitors a soldier's vital signs, or sends out an alert in the presence of toxins and decontaminates the soldier before any damage occurs. Or it could be a material that changes color to camouflage the soldier or protect him or her against ballistics.
An article on the Small Times web site provides a good overview of the Army program, as well those of other branches of the U.S. military.