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Slideshow: Military Robots Go Where Soldiers Can't
4/20/2012

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The Boston Dynamics BigDog is packed with sensors and powered by an engine that drives a hydraulic activation system. The robot is about three feet long and weighs 240 pounds. It can walk, run at 4mph, climb 35-degree slopes, and carry 340 pounds. The project is funded by DARPA's Tactical Technology Office. (Source: Boston Dynamics)
The Boston Dynamics BigDog is packed with sensors and powered by an engine that drives a hydraulic activation system. The robot is about three feet long and weighs 240 pounds. It can walk, run at 4mph, climb 35-degree slopes, and carry 340 pounds. The project is funded by DARPA's Tactical Technology Office.
(Source: Boston Dynamics)

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William K.
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Re: Robots go where soldiers can't
William K.   1/7/2014 8:27:42 PM
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R.G. Make those robots nine feet tall and they would be incredibly scary. A real interesting concept. Of course they would need to have red laser beam "eyes" as well. Truely the stuff of ones worst nightmares, I would guess.

Randolph Garrison
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Re: Robots go where soldiers can't
Randolph Garrison   1/7/2014 1:21:58 PM
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I was looking more at it costing around $1000.00 for a tele-presence robot to take the place of a human solder, instead of spending $500,000.00 to make a remote controlled truck, tank, etc.  

A robot catching a bullet instead of the solder seems better.

A robot in the field requires much less support I food, water, cooks, tents, etc.

Not all robots need o be 6 feet tall.  How would the Iraq war gone if the robots were RED with pointed tails and spit fire while climbing out of the sand?

Just a thought!

 

William K.
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Re: Robots go where soldiers can't
William K.   1/7/2014 11:37:58 AM
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A human sized robot would be limited to going where a human could go, which could be a real limitation. Besides that, what "human sized" equipment, aside from weapons, would a robot need that would not function better if they were designed for robotic use? Most robots don't need the human survival equipment and personal safety items, and I just can't imagine that a robot with a humans K-Bar would be that useful. Even most of the rescue robots are not human sized or proportioned, although some of them are sort of scary looking. 

For non-millitary applications, robots with a more human looking form may be a good choice, because that covers such a wide range of applications.

ramjet@metrocast.net
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Re: Robots go where soldiers can't
ramjet@metrocast.net   1/7/2014 9:50:23 AM
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I would point out that unless iRobot has changed it's position , They do not allow weapons on any robot they provide.

And the Military has, so far, bought robots from them anyway because they can be used in many other ways. A robot following a soldier carrying most of his/her load can make the soldier far more effective for days.

 

I will also note a number of the other robots appear to be based off the early iRobot designs. Packbot has been in operations for years now.

As always, altering/recreating something you have seen is far easier than creating something from scratch, thus similar robots will abound.

 

Now, Here is your next Conundrum:

Are you aware of the FIRST robotics competition in schools?  It is promoting STEM through robotics cometition. Where do you thing all those New Robotics engineers are going to end up? And what will they be designing?

Fortunately I just read a story about an early success from there, a young man now in college created a non profit giving powered wheelchairs to those who can't afford them. They take old, broken or otherwise unused chairs and refubish them. If a chair is not repairable they take it apart and keep the parts for other repairs. And it is all run by former High School kids in FIRST robotics classes.

randolphgarrison1
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Robots go where soldiers can't
randolphgarrison1   9/23/2013 9:16:55 AM
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Part of the defination of a robot is to perform tasks that are hazardous to people.

Looks like they are arming a varity of remote control cars with beefed up drive systems.

It is my opinion that military robots should be human sized.  Able to use equipment designed and built for human soldiers without modification must be the goal.  Even if the robot is a premative telepresence robot would have large advantages.  It is difficult to injure a soldier in iowa that is fighting in solmala.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Robots going where
Ann R. Thryft   5/8/2013 1:04:00 PM
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Battar, thanks for the clarification. Actually, I believe someone else raised that possibility, since I don't tend to think that way. In any case, I think you've made a good point about what, or rather who, our lethalized robots will be fighting.

Battar
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Re: Robots going where
Battar   5/8/2013 2:54:05 AM
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Ann, you raised to possibility of a future conflict in which unmanned military robots would, in effect, be fighting each other, or more to the point, aasigned to destroy or disable the oppositions' robots (which would be similarly tasked). I'm pointing out the extreme unliklihood of such a scenario, given that the current regimes and organizations which represent a threat to the US are not typically equipped with high-tech weaponry.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Robots going where
Ann R. Thryft   5/7/2013 12:43:53 PM
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Battar, you did make that hypothesis clear. However, I'm not sure how that's connected to the discussion(s) here: can you tell us what the point is you want to make with that hypothesis?

Battar
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Re: Robots going where
Battar   5/5/2013 3:01:24 AM
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I thought I made it clear that in future conflict military robots would more likely be facing primitvely armed opposition combatants than facing the oppositions robots.

Ann R. Thryft
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Re: Robots going where
Ann R. Thryft   5/2/2013 11:50:39 AM
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Battar, if you mean suicide bombers, yes, they've been around for some time and we've all heard of them. But I'm not sure what your point is--what do you see as the connection between them and these robots?

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