Your tax dollars at work — catching Big Air — looking pretty cool!

A four-wheeled robot that looks like a kid’s geeky remote controlled car is making some impressive leaps that should make the military’s top brass giddy with childlike joy. It can leap some 30 feet in the air, high enough to jump onto roofs and over walls.

The idea behind the Sand Flea, from the robotics company Boston Dynamics, is to use it as a tool to send behind enemy lines (or over walls) and capture video with an on-board camera that can be streamed back to soldiers in real time. When it’s all done, it simply leaps back to safety.

The Sand Flea rolls around on four wheels until it comes time to make a leap. Then, it rears back on a CO2 powered piston to make the jump. An onboard stabilization system keeps it oriented during flight for a better view and controlled landings. The robot can make 25 leaps before it needs a recharge.

The company is developing it in partnership with the U.S. Army’s Rapid Equipping Force. The Sand Flea is slated for deployment in Afghanistan once it passes safety evaluations.

Can you imagine how thoroughly this will freak out the average Talibandit. They should install a speaker/sound system and have it blare some Kabul heavy metal tunes while escaping.

3 thoughts on “Your tax dollars at work — catching Big Air — looking pretty cool!

    • moss says:

      Know anyone over at Sandia Labs? Maybe they’ll have a garage sale on undestroyed prototypes.

      Though if I know government engineers, leftovers are already home with the kiddies.

      • She speaks.... says:

        LOL.. you’re probably right. And no, I don’t know anyone at any of the labs, except the head of security at on of the local ABQ Sandia Labs. That’s it. and I have tried to get info out of her, and she will not budge. I’ve tried the “blink once for yes, twice for no” to no avail. Alas….

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