Forgot your password?
typodupeerror
Robotics The Military Hardware

Boston Dynamics' PETMAN Humanoid On Video 70

Posted by Soulskill
from the somebody-help-john-connor-hide dept.
An anonymous reader writes "IEEE reports that Boston Dynamics has unveiled video footage showing its biped humanoid robot PETMAN walking, kneeling, and doing push-ups. Boston Dynamics is building the robot for the U.S. Army, which will use it to test chemical protective suits for soldiers. The requirement was that the robot had to be the approximate size of a 50th percentile adult male (180 pounds, nearly 6 feet tall) and capable of a full range of dynamic movements. The company says PETMAN could also be used to survey disaster zones and access hazardous environments."

This discussion has been archived. No new comments can be posted.

Boston Dynamics' PETMAN Humanoid On Video

Comments Filter:
  • A military robot that can kneel?

    Our military robots should kneel to no man (or bot). If it is going to kneel- can it least learn how to bake eclaires too?

  • The push-ups are lame.

    The walking, however, is totally badass.

    But, as with all Boston Dynamics video releases, we have to ask: where is its head?

  • by decipher_saint (72686) on Monday October 31, 2011 @02:50PM (#37899240) Homepage

    Am I the only one who heard the Rocky theme song in my head while I watched it?

    If the robot starts punching meat we know we got a contenda

    (until then, you're a bum PETMAN! A BUM!)

  • by sverrehu (22545) on Monday October 31, 2011 @02:51PM (#37899244) Homepage
    With this, humans won't need take BigDog for a daily walk anymore.
  • Sorry, Ive been a bit out of the robotics loop lately, but holey freaking crap. If that isnt "uncanny valley" freaky, I dont know what is. It seems we really will see something resembling 100% humanoid robots in my lifetime. Tethered or not (think factory worker, hazmat, or ... military...) this is amazingly cool (creepy).

    • by fatphil (181876)
      I agree, the walk certainly was on the edge of uncanny vally, more than anything else I've seen. (Then again, I'm not that surprised, I think the Boston Dynamics guys have been at the leading edge of walker technology since before they were even Boston Dynamics.) However, I don't think what we saw was really a tethered design, it looks like it's just a stopgap until they have compact enough power source, and don't care about gathering real-time telemetry?
  • Pet _MAN
    How appropriate.

    It will be a hit with woman.

    It let's itself be pushed around,
    It checks the toilet seat state.
    It proposes on one knee.

    The only flaw I see, is that it only seems to know the missionary position...

  • These robots they're developing are cool and everything but their usefulness seems very limited until someone can come up with a suitable power supply. Maybe it's just me, but it doesn't seem like we're anywhere close to something that could fit inside this robot and power it for any significant length of time.
    • by thejaq (2495514)
      It would pretty easy to build a gas turbine w/ genset at 1 kW/kg I think. Anyway, add 15kg for a 15kW power plant. Assume 30% net efficiency * energy of petrol (45MJ/kg) = 15,000 kJ/kg of fuel. So each kg of fuel gives a run time of ~4hr. So 20 kg in weight you would have the strength of 11 horses for 20 hours. I don't know, that's frightening to me. Good thing I'll be able to hear that 100,000 RPM gas turbine at 300 yards....
    • by Belial6 (794905)
      My house has plenty of places for a humanoid robot to plug itself into. We have also been know to use extension cords, so that doesn't seem to be too much of a stretch. In fact, the building codes in my area say that you cannot build a house with the electrical outlets more than 12 feet apart.
      • My house has plenty of places for a humanoid robot to plug itself into. We have also been know to use extension cords, so that doesn't seem to be too much of a stretch. In fact, the building codes in my area say that you cannot build a house with the electrical outlets more than 12 feet apart.

        Unfortunately and teenagers notwithstanding, houses are not typical warzones.

    • by roman_mir (125474)

      It says in the description of the video that this robot is used to test clothing.

      It does all sorts of movements that soldiers would do, that's how you test clothing.

      • by Ch_Omega (532549)

        It says in the description of the video that this robot is used to test clothing.

        It does all sorts of movements that soldiers would do, that's how you test clothing.

        It also says this in tfa:

        "I also asked Raibert if they could eventually use PETMAN or PETMAN-related technologies in other projects. In other words, are we going to see PETMAN used in applications other than the chemical suit tests? "You bet," he says. "There are all sorts of things robots like PETMAN could be used for. Any place that has been designed for human access, mobility, or manipulation skills. Places like the Fukushima reactors could be accessed by PETMAN-like robots (or AlphaDogs), without req

    • by Ch_Omega (532549)
      They managed to create a suitable internal powerplant for BigDog, one of their other robots, all the way back in 2008, while still having it tethered inn other, later videos of testing inside, so who know, maybe they have a powerplant designed for Petman too, and just prefere to have it stable enough first, before they progress to untethered testing? Or maybe the sound of the powerplant, resembling a swarm of bees, is something that would drive them crazy during testing inside, and they therefore prefers th
  • by amstrad (60839) on Monday October 31, 2011 @02:56PM (#37899306)
    Is it also going to lust after Kirk Doulgas' hot young wife? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Saturn_3 [wikipedia.org]
  • Impressive but, can it be untethered? If so, for how long?

  • Mythbusters totally need one of these. I can already see them covering it with dead pig parts for use as a human analogue.

  • The robot made doing pushups look as hard as I find them to do.

  • by Anonymous Coward

    I wonder what will the occupy wall street and 99% movements will make of this. Democracy can't work in presence of assembly lines of robot soldiers and workers. The technology is not there yet, but will be before the next generation is 30-40 years old.

    • This is the first intelligent remark in this thread. I wonder if human society in general can work in the large scale presence of robot soldiers and workers. Robotic technology is advancing far more quickly than I had expected. The next 20 or 30 years are not going to be boring. Who owns the robots owns the wealth.
      • by Whuffo (1043790)
        That's surprisingly insightful. These robots still have a long way to go before they could be useful combat troops - but they're getting too close for comfort.

        Here's my prediction: when robotic combat troops are deployed, they'll be deployed against American citizens.
        • Of course, they will not be called "combat troops." They are too close for comfort for pretty much any purpose you can mention. We are at the tail end of 2011. What will they be like in 2014? 2018? 2025? Barring tragic accidents or medical issues, most of us sitting here watching the video will live to see the walking, talking, working, patrolling descendants of PetMan. May the gods have mercy on our souls, for I fear the owners of the robots will not.
      • by tehcyder (746570)

        Who owns the robots owns the wealth.

        Then humanity should own the robots collectively. A system with a handful of people owning 99% of the world's wealth will not be sustainable.

        • A system with a handful of people owning 99% of the world's wealth will not be sustainable.

          Alas, my friend, it has been sustainable for the better part of 30,000 years.
  • Petman doesn't have a standalone power requirement. It's partly for equipment testing and partly a technology testbed. BigDog is powered by a small gasoline engine, and AlphaDog will be Diesel-powered.

  • by Pvt_Waldo (459439) on Monday October 31, 2011 @06:28PM (#37901710)

    A comparison to make here is with Neill Blomkamp's pre District 9 work, the Tetra Vaal short.

    http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-6645931304419661379 [google.com]

  • From the article:

    According to the Army requirements, the robot has to have about the same weight and dimensions of a 50th percentile male (the size of a standard crash-test dummy), or a mass of 80 kilograms (about 180 pounds) and height of about 1.75 meters (nearly 6 feet). PETMAN also has to simulate respiration, sweating, and changes in skin temperature based on the amount of physical exertion.

    Emphasis mine. Anyone know why the Army wants a robot that respires, sweats and changes skin temp? Weird...

    • Anyone know why the Army wants a robot that respires, sweats and changes skin temp? Weird...

      The 600 series had rubber skin. We spotted them easy, but these are new. They look human... sweat, bad breath, everything. Very hard to spot.

    • The stated claim that it is for uniform and clothing designs is ludicrous. No sane person would embark on an android creation program for such a purpose. This is part of a long-term robot creation program, pure and simple. They are coming to a city and town near you. Maybe not today, maybe not next year, but we have all just seen a snapshot of the future.
  • It would all be a lot more convincing if it didn't have so many wires sticking out the back.
    • Replace them with WiFi and a small generator and you're there. This is just a prototype. A declassified prototype.

panic: can't find /

Working...