U.S. army developing exoskeletons for tomorrow's soldiers
The Pentagon is pumping millions of dollars into exoskeleton technology to make soldiers stronger and more resilient.
WASHINGTON — The U.S. army is developing exoskeleton technology to make soldiers deployed out in the battlefield stronger and more resilient.
The exoskeleton is being developed by Lockheed Martin Corporation with a license from Canada-based B-TEMIA, which first developed the technology to help people suffering from medical related mobility issues, according to Reuters.
The battery-operated exoskeleton is worn over a soldier's pants and uses sensors, artificial intelligence and other technology to aid in natural movements.
Modern U.S. soldiers are now deployed into war zones carrying anywhere from 90 to 140 pounds of critical gear, including body armor, night-vision goggles and advanced radios, while the recommended limit is only 50 pounds.
The goal of the exoskeleton would be to lighten the load soldiers must carry, so when they arrive at the battlefield, they aren't excessively fatigued.
According to Reuters, Lockheed Martin said last Thursday it was awarded a two-year $6.9 million contract from the U.S. Army Natick Soldier Research, Development and Engineering Center to research and develop the ONYX exoskeleton.
Keith Maxwell, the exoskeleton technologies manager at Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control, told Reuters that each exoskeleton is expected to cost in the tens of thousands of dollars.
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