Military exoskeleton - It's real!

I came across thisand damn… I really didn’t think we were that close. Check out the video. The thing is still attached to an outside power source, but they plan to attach an internal power source before they deliver prototypes to the US Army for field testing in 2008. They’ve already won the contract from DARPA so it’s happening.

I know what I want for Christmas

Why did the guy in the video mutter something about finding John Connor?

One very odd thing about this is that Sarcos (the company in the link) beat out a company called Cyberdyne for the contract.

Also, Cyberdyne’s prototype is named HAL.

No, I’m not making any of that up.

Additional link regarding Cyberdynes HAL

Wow. Fifteen years ago when I was in grad school we had a Sarcos arm in the lab. It was really unreliable and never worked right. It looks like they’ve made lots of progress over the years.

Yeah, great peacetime video . . .

It’s awesome and terrific to tout such an ‘invention’ back behind friendly lines, but that thing will fail at the precisely most inopportune moment. Somehow a bullet or a piece of shrapnel will find the motor or a hydraulic hoze, and the “wearer” will be instantly hoisting around 150 lbs. of dead weight, and will be a target him/herself.

Color me unimpressed.

They’ve got some field testing to do–and I don’t mean ‘prancing or up a simple ramp’.

Dude, how could you not make references like that? I aways thought that if I had the chance to name a military vehicle, I’d come up with some kind of convoluted name that the natural acronym for it would be AT-AT. :smiley:

And to add to what Tripler said, Murphy being the deciding factor in a number of military battles, those things will run out of juice/gas/whatever at the worst possible moment.

It’s impressive, but it’s operating on a power supply tether, isn’t it?

Worked for Evangelion…

Good thing you fellas weren’t in charge of tanks or aircraft in 1914, or submarines in 1862… :rolleyes:

Perhaps, but good christ! Think of the non-military applications! Construction, Exploration, Rescue, More Construction, Law Enforcement, Fighting Alien Queens… and, one day, hopefully one in the garage! :smiley:

Yeah, the Hunley performed well in the Civil War, didn’t it? (Sank twice, killing most of her crew the first time and then all of her crew the second time.) And tanks and aircraft seemed to work just fine, seeing as how they were fairly “mature” technology and didn’t have a running life of just a few minutes on a tank of gas. (Patton and other US military personnel had seen the value of mobile military power long before tanks or Jeeps entered service and worked vigorously on their development.) In all of those cases, the technology basically existed to have a workable design, but many of the elements just hadn’t come together in the end products. The same cannot be said of the robosuit.

Putting that robosuit on the battlefield now would be like trying to field the Wright brothers first airplane, and improving the fuel life of that thing is a bit more difficult than trying to improve the power of the engine of the Wrights plane as everyone is trying to crack the fuel economy nut right now, and aren’t able to do much more than incremental improvements. Give it 20+ years, and we’ll talk. Maybe.

Why, yes. First sub to sink an enemy vessel. Or, as is often said on the playground or in bars, “But you should see the other guy!”

Sure, I don’t think anyone said they were. Loading trucks seems a pretty good beginning for it. I could sure as hell use it to carry 17" CRT monitors around. :slight_smile:

You’re absolutely right! I’d rather the thing fail under load at UPS when it’s got a pallet on its arms and it comes unhitched to it’s power umbilical. That’ll be a load of laughs!

Yup. You’ll be laughing when yer moms Christmas cookies come in broken little pieces. Boo friggin’ hoo.

Actually, I was thinking my 75 year old Mom, incl two knee replacements and a hip, would love something like that for walking around town.

Sure, she might toss a vehicle or two on occasion, but mostly she’d behave.

So, that makes the Hunley 1 for 2, right? (One enemy ship sank for every two times the Hunley went down.) To quote Patton, “The object of war is not to die for your country, it’s to make the other son of a bitch die for his!”

Or, you could switch to flat panel LCDs and plasmas and not have to worry about it. :smiley: What’s Heinlein say in Starship Troopers about clunking out on the battlefield with lasers only to have the dispicable enemy open fire with the cheap and easily portable machine gun? :eek:

I’m Jewish, and Mama is dead, silly. Your analogy is absurdum nonfactorum or something. :slight_smile:

How much did the Housatanic (sp) cost and how many crew compared to the Hunley? And Patton was an ass, slapping that guy. Good armor guy, (glad they kept working on tanks) but his HR abilities left something to be desired.

They’re here, and I gotta carry them, if only to get throw them away.

C’mon, that is kinda funny.

Doesn’t look like you can use it in such a way to defy the wearers center of mass. So lifting huge, heavy pallets would be out of the question. But picking up and loading myriad heavy boxes and packages… perfect.

How is this suit anything short of awesome, despite its flaws at this time?

Don’t know about the price, but the Housatonic had a bit of a career before the Hunley brought her down. She lost only 5 men (two officers and three enlisted). The Hunley sank on her first operation, killing her crew of 8 men, bringing the total number of crew killed by her to 14.

True, but every genius (and Patton was a military genius, not only on the battlefield, but in seeing the advantages of tanks long before anyone else and took an active role in their development, which is more than can be said of some modern generals) has his/her flaws. Many historians now think that at the time of the slapping (and it was two soldiers he slapped), Patton was suffering from PTSD. He also had a number of severe head injuries (mainly having to do with being kicked by horses) which quite probably weren’t properly treated at the time and thus could have led to some of his personality problems.

Well, they’ll be long gone before you ever see one of those robosuits, I can assure you. They ain’t cheap, I’m sure, and even if you do work for Uncle Sam, his pockets aren’t going to be deep enough to see to it that everyone who wants one gets one.

It seems to me that if an exoskeleton has enough strength to enable me to effortlessly lift hundreds of pounds, it could probably just as easily yank my limbs right out of their sockets if it suddenly malfunctions.

The video of the exo-trooper lifting the 72-lb ammo cans would have been slightly more impressive if the sixtyish, white-haired news guy hadn’t done the exact same thing first to demonstrate.

You’ve got to figure that a single unit will probably cost several hundred thousand dollars, and require specialized maintenance and repairs. Or you could apparently get several old guys to accomplish the task instead.

I guess what I’m saying is: Sarcos should probably think twice before including that particular video in their promotional material.