DARPA Project Exoskeleton

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Would you want to use an Exoskeleton in combat?

Yes, this is great technology that will enhance a soldier's performance.
11
38%
No, I'm old school. Soldiers should train harder/smarter.
8
28%
No, this is an accident waiting to happen.
10
34%
 
Total votes: 29

Spartan

DARPA Project Exoskeleton

Post by Spartan »

Well, this is one of the solutions to the age old question about increasing the performance capabilities of a human being.

http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/rele ... _exo.shtml

This time, it is applied to a military application, and the response to the desire to increase the load carrying capacity of a soldier.

There are sure benefits to this technology such as increased load carrying capacity, increased endurance, less fatigue and better decision making while the body is under less stress. This technology, as much new technology is introduced, is often first targeted for testing/use by SOF, such as in the application of carrying large loads of equipment to a target destination.

But along with new technology, is the responsibility of asking if that technology is pertinent, necessary and most importantly, what will the consequences be if that technology fails at mission time? If the performance enhancing technology is destroyed, what happens to the individual strapped to it at the time it is hit?

There are sure other issues that would need to be resolved before an exoskeleton could be used in combat. What do you think would be necessary in order to employ such technology in combat?

As usual, please express your thoughts behind your vote.

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Post by Bandito »

I picked #3. There are somethings that you just need to leave alone. The technology thing has been a large topic lately and here is another example of trying to do too little with too much.

The exoskeleton will only create problems I think in the long run with maintenance issues. How many times have they created something so high speed that it will enhance overall proficiency and in the end could not operate in harsh conditions that soldiers operate in?

Carrying heavy loads over great distances also enhances endurance and this would take so much away from that. There are other means to move heavy loads around that are old school and in the end, quite effective. ATVs (which can get you into ALOT of areas, even really rough terrain, you are only limited by the amount of gasoline you can carry, but again, there is airdrop), horses and good old fashioned human load carriers.

I dunno, I guess maybe it is the old school thought process, but I have been part of a many test programs from some type of HIGH SPEED equipment that will enhance operations that in the end fails in the harsh environments, because the designers fail to understand the reality of things (which means they never went into the environments to see the harsh reality of it).
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Post by Currahee 3-4 »

Voted 3....ditto to everything Ranger DS said.I first remember hearing about this probably 10 years ago.Bad idea then,bad idea now

Even if it was viable they would have some new private test it,give his input then send it to high speed units and get people hurt.The armys testing program was flawed before ,i cant imagine its better now.

High tech equals high tech problems.
Last edited by Currahee 3-4 on March 5th, 2004, 2:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: DARPA Project Exoskeleton

Post by Steadfast »

Ranger Spartan wrote:Well, this is one of the solutions to the age old question about increasing the performance capabilities of a human being.

http://www.berkeley.edu/news/media/rele ... _exo.shtml

This time, it is applied to a military application, and the response to the desire to increase the load carrying capacity of a soldier.

There are sure benefits to this technology such as increased load carrying capacity, increased endurance, less fatigue and better decision making while the body is under less stress. This technology, as much new technology is introduced, is often first targeted for testing/use by SOF, such as in the application of carrying large loads of equipment to a target destination.

But along with new technology, is the responsibility of asking if that technology is pertinent, necessary and most importantly, what will the consequences be if that technology fails at mission time? If the performance enhancing technology is destroyed, what happens to the individual strapped to it at the time it is hit?

There are sure other issues that would need to be resolved before an exoskeleton could be used in combat. What do you think would be necessary in order to employ such technology in combat?

As usual, please express your thoughts behind your vote.
I voted one. I think this will be standard usage in the military and all aspects of human kind. This of course is only in its infancy so don't blow it off the calender completely. I believe that if any one voted any other category they are correct but merely for the immediate future. All though time men with vision have suggested ideas that have finally come to fruition. Take flying for instance. I am sure that prior to men actually flying there have been people dreaming of one taking to the air. DaVinci drew of it... when in say the 1400's so I might be off a hundred or so years. So based on that time frame say in 4 or 500 years....you don't think men will be using this technology? Well we won't be around. The leaps and bounds science has taken in the last say 700 years has been just amazing when compared to the last 10,000 years. Agree?

Years ago, I saw a science fiction movie called: THX 1134. In this movie the advanced civilization had gone so purely mental that they no longer had bodies. Their heads were encased in spherical bubbles and they were carried around by mindless clones called THX. I may evolve that far just for this post as I think to my clone, "THX I am ready to go."
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Post by Bandito »

Ranger Steadfast, sir are you drinking today???

JK my friend.....
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Post by Slowpoke »

Voted #3, it will be a maintenance nightmare. Todays troops need to be more mobile, not mechanical.
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Post by Rgr_MindRiot »

I have to agree with SF, this technology has great potential not only for the military but for the civilian world as well. True, it needs more developement but so did everything else when it first started.

One use of this tech. in the field might be to equip medics or designate teams to evac. wounded from the AO immediately and quickly using only one soldier. Another might be to mule ammo/suplies into a unit so that they can continue to fight. What about a mini-gun team ? For civilians the possibilities are many. Firefighters don't get fatigued so fast, construction workers same thing, Search & Rescue Teams can deploy longer, Trekers, the disabled, many, many possibilities.
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Post by BRanger91 »

I think the civil application can be alot more practical than a tactical application. Too many 'what if' questions come up. I would rather should my own weight. If that thing went down and you had to carry your own gear you would not be ready. I think it would cause more injuries in the long run.
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Post by Horned Toad »

Well I voted 2, not that I am old school. I think this gadget now is just that a gadget. They used a 70 pound ruck for an example, WOW was that the regular army standard or something. Then 100 pounds for the metal legs. So you have a 100+ pound Ranger ruck, 100 pound gadget, 165 pound stud with another 40 pounds of LBE ammo and gun, that’s like 400+ pounds of shit and your trying to chase a guy that is carrying a rifle and a few magazines, I don’t care how strong it is certain terrain will only support so much weight per square inch. That is where the enemy will go. I try to picture doing swamp phase with that thing on, or deep sand.
I think they need to cut the load the troops are carrying now.
Get them a gun that’s gona work (can someone tell me why we don’t have a modern version of the STG 43 in like 7mm 0r 6.5 mm short.)
I would have some good optics and work on getting the commo package smaller. I would say something like a LBE with a day pack with a max weight of 45 pounds.

Then on the training side.
Train harder duh! but train with and without the high-tech gear, That why I like reading about the PI Rangers. Get a better PT program, a bullshit football team has trainers, sports doctors, and physical therapist all for what, so some fat slob can get dunk and yell on sunday. Get an Olympic PT program going, get sports doctors that deal with sports injuries not some shit bag (not Ranger Medic) army doc who says" stay off it for 2 weeks and take motrin" Train in more spots, nothing is gona prepare you for going up and down mountain except mountains. You could move a Bat up to CO, spend your whole time doing PT at 10000 ft and everywhere else will be a piece of cake. Get good food in the chow hall.

I also think we need to see about rotating guys through places that have LIC’s going on. To get some real world shooting under their belt. At this time that may not be necessary do to world climate, but when I was in there was a lot of guys that didn’t have experience ( like me ) . If you read some of the Vietnam stuff where they ran schools in combat zones, I think that is they way to go.

Bottom line being a tough physically fit mean SOB is part of being a Ranger, with that gadget pewee herman could get his shit the field and when it breaks, he would break and we would lose.
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