The most exciting development in recent years has to be quadrupedal robots. Their small stature and mobility allow them to traverse environments that outshine wheeled vehicles. Now, they are being equipped with guns dubbing them armed robotic dogs.
How The Robotic Dogs Are Used
The Air Force currently utilizes the unarmed Vision 60 units built by US firm Ghost Robotics. In general, the purpose of these robotic dogs is to patrol small battle spaces and provide necessary hard-to-reach data.
In addition, the military uses them to patrol the base’s perimeter, navigating swampy areas that “aren’t desirable for human beings and vehicles,” according to Ghost Robotics CEO Jiren Parikh.
Although surveillance is the primary purpose for these robotic dogs, manufacturers are experimenting with other uses, such as remote video and mapping, mobile cell towers, defusing bombs, or detecting chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear matter (CBRN).
Last year, the military executed one of the first major exercises at Nellis Air Force Base in Nevada to test the capabilities of these robotic dogs. The exercise was part of a test for the Advanced Battle Management System (ABMS). In detail, ABMS is an Air Force project to provide command, control, and sensor fusion.
Who Developed The Armed Robotic Dogs
The Association of the United States Army’s 2021 annual conference recently showcased the new armed robotic dog. A Vision 60 unit built by US firm Ghost Robotics equipped with a custom gun designed by small-arms specialist Sword International.
Equipped with 30x optical zoom, a thermal camera for in-the-dark missions, and an effective range of 1,200, the gun is a SPUR or “special purpose unmanned rifle.” Furthermore, it is able to fit various robotic machines.
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