Have you ever seen one of Boston Dynamics’ robots? They are quite good at running and walking across difficult terrain, so good in fact that they look kind of frightening. Boston Dynamics is a part of Google’s SpaceX division, and one of its latest robots was recently tested by the Marines. Dubbed Spot, the robot weighs about 70kg and moves around on four hydraulically-actuated legs. It can be controlled wirelessly from a distance of up to 500 meters, which is a great asset considering the fact that it was designed with military use in mind. Spot was tested at the Marine Corps Base Quantico in Virginia on various terrains such as woodlands, hills and urban areas, and it performed admirably.
It makes sense for the military to be interested in these machines, as they could be programmed to perform dangerous tasks, not to mention the fact that they could also be used as pack mules. Compared to its older siblings named LS3 and Big Dog, Spot is quieter, more agile and it is equipped with a Light Detection And Ranging (LIDAR) laser imaging sensor. This sensor is similar to the one that is installed on Google’s self-driving cars, and it allows the robot to analyze its surroundings.
The branch leader of the Marine Corps Warfighting Lab, James Pineiro, has stated the following:
“We want to continue to experiment with quadruped technology and find ways that this can be employed to enhance the Marine Corps warfighting capabilties.”
Thank you PCWorld for providing us with this information.