Israel is already preparing for the next round of conflict with Gaza-based Islamist terrorists, with some experts predicting renewed hostilities as early as the end of this year.
Any future conflict will likely see Hamas and Islamic Jihad – the two major terrorist groups in Gaza – increasingly relying on attack tunnels into Israeli territory to carry out deadly attacks, as Israel's Iron Dome missile defense system proved effective at frustrating their plans to inflict massive casualties on Israeli civilians using their stockpiles of unguided rockets during Operation Protective Edge last summer.
The sophisticated network of tunnels both within Gaza and – more critically – infiltrating into Israel from Hamas-held territory, caught the IDF largely off-guard during the summer war, and poses a new technical challenge for Israeli military forces and intelligence services.
Detecting such tunnels is currently extremely difficult, but the US military may have developed a solution.
According to Channel Two, at a recent Department of Defense exhibition held by the Pentagon developers showcased a new system which can detect tunnels up to eight meters underground, and even track tunneling progress in realtime.
The system uses both soundwaves and vibration receptors to track underground tunnels, and has reportedly already proven itself after being deployed along the US border with Mexico, where drug-smuggling tunnels are a major problem.
Each time a tunneler drills or strikes the ground the sensors pick up the vibrations and are able to track them back to their source, providing operators with an accurate location.
The technology could also provide a solution to growing concerns along Israel's northern border with Lebanon over possible attack tunnels dug into Israel by Hezbollah.