The Pentagon has a new project aimed at seeking out developing technologies around the world that could either aid U.S. military efforts or seriously disrupt existing military plans.

Military operators in the “Technology Watch/Horizon Scanning” program will work with contractors to track key technology buzzwords to see where they are being used around the world, and to look for the emergence of new scientific concepts and technology applications with ‘disruptive potential,’ according to the published conceptual framework.

Growing concern with the surge of high tech innovation in China and other nations and the potential military consequences if left unchecked, the Pentagon is creating a program to track and analyze emerging technology research and patents, military records and interviews show, USA Today reports.

Can the Pentagon out think Chinas tech experts? New project will try

Chinese naval soldiers man their stations on China’s first aircraft carrier, Liaoning. (Reuters/Stringer)

The program is still in development, but the goal is to mine information at the first stages of research and development in a number of countries, before the technology or weapons become reality.

In recent months China has made significant efforts to highlight their military and technological steps forward, recently claiming their new H-6K strategic bomber can attack U.S. military bases in South Korea as well as the Japanese mainland using long range nuclear cruise missiles. In December China not only successfully landed their first lunar rover on the moon, but also announced the country’s rival to the U.S. Navy’s carrier battle groups.

Update: A defense official said off the record that the new program is not focused on any particular nation or area of technology, despite what other sources intimated.

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