For the purpose of testing chemical protection clothing, Boston Dynamics has been developing a rather impressive robot. Its name: PETMAN (Protection Ensemble Test Mannequin). As far as the news goes, the robot doesn’t have a medical purpose, but since we covered it last time two years ago, it has become more robust and it is great to see how well our mechanical body movements are executed by the robot. See for yourself down below in the video.
Except for the missing head, this machine looks like it’s ready to go to war. However, the supposed true purpose of this robot is to test army clothes for use in hazardous environments like chemical warfare. Therefore, the system had to mimic the movements of human soldiers. And it does so pretty well: PETMAN can balance itself, move freely and is even able to do pushups. To provide realistic test conditions, the robot will also simulate human physiology within the protective suit by controlling temperature, humidity and sweating. And even though it is not designed to go into the battlefield itself, we’re sure we’d prefer to have it on our side of the front line.
Project info page: PETMAN
Medgadget flashback: PETMAN Humanoid Walking Robot