SCIENCE

U.S. Military Tests Robotic 'Pack Mule' To Go Practically Anywhere

07/16/2014 02:32 pm 14:32:24 | Updated Jul 16, 2014

No, you're not watching a scene from "Transformers."

The U.S. Military released new footage on July 13, 2014 of the Legged Squad Supports System robot, which behaves sort of like a futuristic mule, being tested in an open field at the Kahuku Training Area in Hawaii. Just check it out in the YouTube video above.

“A lot of people don’t think that it’d be able to handle the terrain that it does," Lance Cpl. Brandon Dieckmann, who was operating the robot during the test, says in the video. The robot, called 'LS3,' was developed by Google-owned Boston Dynamics.

In the video, it tromps through high grass and uneven terrain while using sensor technology to closely follow Dieckmann. LS3 is programmed to follow a sensor attached to an electronic device worn by a soldier, New York Daily News reported.

Engineers designed the robot to follow soldiers on foot and carry heavy cargo. In fact, each robot can carry up to 400 pounds of gear and enough fuel for a 20-mile mission lasting a full day, according to Boston Dynamics.

But the robots don't seem to do all of that very quietly.

YouTube user Adam Fennich commented on the video, “It's useful for conventional infantry but too loud for special operations."

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