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Iron Man Is Another Step Closer To a Reality

Soulskill posted more than 3 years ago | from the i'll-order-a-dozen dept.

The Military 289

arshadk writes with this excerpt from an article at CNN: "Inside a prosthetic shell of metal and hydraulics, Raytheon test engineer Rex Jameson is putting an XOS-2 exoskeleton through its paces. As the crowd watches, Jameson uses his robot hydraulic arm to shadowbox, break three inches of pine boards and toss around 72-pound ammunition cases like a bored contestant on the 'World's Strongest Man.' The suit moves as he moves and amplifies his strength 17-fold. ... Raytheon is seeking to develop the suits to help the US military carry supplies, and claims that one operator in an exoskeleton suit can do the work of two to three soldiers. If all goes as planned, the company hopes to see 'Iron Man' suits deployed in the field by 2015."

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FIRST (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206324)

FIRST

Skynet (4, Funny)

Toe, The (545098) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206350)

Simple math:

Ironman - man = Terminator

I dont think tinfoil is going to protect my skull against this thing.

Re:Skynet (3, Insightful)

immakiku (777365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206592)

The "ironman" part of that equation is much easier to produce than the "- man" part of it.

Re:Skynet (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206722)

How do you operate a powered exoskeleton without a man inside? Put a woman inside! I hear Sigourney Weaver is available...

Re:Skynet (1)

TheLink (130905) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206658)

You need "strong" AI first before you get Terminator.

Otherwise Ironman - man = suit.

To me the amazing achievement in the Ironman movies that nobody seems to notice is the Jarvis AI he's got.

Re:Skynet (4, Interesting)

VShael (62735) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206696)

To me the amazing achievement in the Ironman movies that nobody seems to notice is the Jarvis AI he's got.

It's not AI. It's an English butler with a bondage fetish, that Tony has locked in high-tech closet in the basement.

Re:Skynet (4, Funny)

Kryptonian Jor-El (970056) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206720)

Maybe I'm just missing something, but isn't 'Ironman - man = Iron' ?

Re:Skynet (3, Funny)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206982)

Ironic, isn't it?

Simple math correction (4, Funny)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206698)

Ironman - man = iron. Meaning that even without an operator, this device should still be able to get the wrinkles out of my clothes!

Re:Skynet (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206958)

Another simple math:

Iron Man - Iron = Hypoferremia

Re:Skynet (1)

daem0n1x (748565) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207046)

Sing in a whining voice:

Has he lost his mind
Can he see or is he blind

So.. (1)

Kc_spot (1677970) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206352)

next time I need to punch wood... I get this guy?

Re:So.. (2, Funny)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206998)

The XOS-2 exoskeleton, the perfect way to play minecraft in real life!

Intended Use? (1)

Haedrian (1676506) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206358)

"Raytheon is seeking to develop the suits to help the US military carry supplies"

Cue: Power Armour in 3...2...1.

Re:Intended Use? (4, Insightful)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206418)

"Raytheon is seeking to develop the suits to help the US military carry supplies" Cue: Power Armour in 3...2...1.

With what power? Supply tossing makes sense since the suit can be tied to a supply truck via power cable.

Re:Intended Use? (1)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207060)

I'm going to assume that it won't just plug into the cigarette lighter, mind you. Although a man can dream.

Re:Intended Use? (5, Insightful)

Linsaran (728833) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206460)

This is not exactly new, they've been working on this for a while now. The only thing stopping them from putting armor plating on it and turning it into power armor is the battery life of the suit. Even with the most expensive batteries we can manufacture, there's a maximum opperational time of about 30 minutes on the XOS-2 when disconnected from an external power source. Needing to be plugged in to operate sort of limits their military applications to grunt work and MAYBE defensive deployments. Still if someone can work out the power issues, functional and deployable power armor is really only a manufacturing run away.

Re:Intended Use? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206664)

That's not so bad. Less than that worked for Neon Genesis Evangelion!

Re:Intended Use? (2, Insightful)

RsG (809189) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206762)

Either fuel cells or a portable generator might make more sense than a battery. Both have a much higher energy density per mass and energy density per volume, plus they are much easier to refuel than a battery is to recharge.

Technically, the fuel cells needn't be hydrogen powered, since you can make a fuel cell that runs on hydrocarbons (which are easier to store and transport). A generator adds more exhaust and moving parts, but is at least proven technology. Either could work.

And for military applications, you don't need to augment arm strength, you can focus on the legs and torso. After all, if the intent is to add plate armour for battlefield use, then carry capacity is what you're after, not super-strength. Now, augmented arms would still be desirable, if only because it would allow for heavier infantry weapons (which you'll need once the other side starts fielding powered exosuits), but for the first-gen version you can skip the arms and just use existing rifles.

Re:Intended Use? (1)

JWSmythe (446288) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206950)

    I wouldn't be that surprised to see propane fueled generator used. I didn't see an indication of how much power is needed, but capacitors/batteries for surge capacity (lifting something heavy), and a small generator to keep nominal power supplied would seem easy enough.

    One of the things I've been doing lately is repairing small generators (4-6kw). A friend of mine has a tiny 1kw gas generator. Converting over to propane isn't all that hard. The same conversion from gasoline to propane could be used for hydrogen. With any of the fuels or lithium ion batteries, there is an explosion risk. If the soldier wearing it gets shot wearing this armor (assuming they cover those gaping holes) gets shot in the armor, he may live. If the same shot caused an explosion in the fuel supply, that's not so good. Then again, if it's deployed in a war zone, getting shot wearing some armor is preferable to getting shot wearing no armor.

Re:Intended Use? (2, Informative)

RsG (809189) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207076)

In point of fact, exploding fuel isn't exactly a huge risk.

This is one of those areas where Hollywood is to blame for the popular perception. Every time a car goes off a cliff, every time a tanker truck catches a stray bullet, every time hydrogen is even mentioned, what follows is an impressive pyrotechnics display.

Doesn't work that way in real life. Mythbusters, who never avoid a myth involving kaboomery, have tested most of the fuel explosion myths and found them wanting. Fuel (gasoline, propane, hydrogen, diesel, etc) can catch fire certainly, but this rarely involves the instant towering inferno seen in film and on TV.

As far as that goes, it's not like the military doesn't use plenty of fuelled combat vehicles already. They know how to make them not blow up every time somebody with an AK cuts loose. Self sealing tanks and armour plating in particular mitigate the risk.

So I wouldn't worry about it. And if fire or explosion is a concern, I'd suggest diesel fuel for powered suits, as it doesn't ignite easily, and pretty much can't explode on its own.

Re:Intended Use? (2)

lennier1 (264730) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206468)

Export it to Japan and it's only a matter of weeks until the Knight Sabers become reality. :D

Re:Intended Use? (1)

Razalhague (1497249) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207002)

The japanese have their own. It's called HAL [wikipedia.org] . Made by a company called Cyberdyne. Yep, we're doomed.

Re:Intended Use? (3, Funny)

ByOhTek (1181381) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206682)

No. I think you have it wrong... You seem to be mixing two thoughts

"Raytheon is seeking to develop the suits to help the US military carry supplies"

Cue: Power Armor in 3...2...1.

and

"Raytheon is seeking to develop the suits to help the UK military carry supplies"

Cue: Power Armour in 3...2...1.

Bugs, Mr. Rico. Zillions of em! (1)

Darth Snowshoe (1434515) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206364)

Come on, you apes! You wanna live forever?

Re:Bugs, Mr. Rico. Zillions of em! (1)

amliebsch (724858) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206390)

+1 Exactly

Not a Dupe, its just a delayed Sequel (4, Informative)

Tekfactory (937086) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206374)

This story refers to the Second Generation of the Raytheon Exoskeleton released at the time of the Iron Man 2 DVD back in September.

We've seen footage of the guy tossing ammo boxes and shadow boxing, but those were all the first generation suit, unless you saw this story already on Engadget, Scientific American, etc.

Re:Not a Dupe, its just a delayed Sequel (1)

HeckRuler (1369601) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206804)

Sure, but Stark putting out another version of the suit is hardly newsworthy. He treats those things like candy. Sometimes he gets TWO new suits in the same comic.

Power (4, Insightful)

falldeaf (968657) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206386)

I think they're going to need a suitable power source before this is useful in the field. When are nanotubes going to bring that huge battery increase I keep hearing about?!

Beat me to it :) (1)

masterwit (1800118) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206408)

Either that or the mobile power unit we see in the actual Ironman movies...Good point.

Re:Beat me to it :) (3, Informative)

RsG (809189) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206840)

That was implied to be a fusion reactor. I was actually impressed in the second movie where they made oblique references to neutron embrittlement, which is much more sophisticated physics than comic book movies usually get. Mind you, the rest of the movie's physics were still awful, but I'll cut it some slack given the source material and the desire to be faithful to it.

Presuming it was a fusion reactor, you can pretty much forget about seeing them that small anything soon. Fusion power plants scale up better than they scale down, partly as a result of the square-cube law, and partly as a result of components being hard to miniaturize. We don't even have building sized fusion plants that can produce more energy than it takes to achieve and maintain the reaction in the first place. We'll probably have working fusion power in this century, assuming we keep at the R&D and don't blast ourselves back to the stone age in the meantime, but I doubt we'll have it miniaturized to Iron Man levels anytime in the next couple hundred years.

Re:Power (1, Interesting)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206420)

They just need a small scale MEC like in the Varia suit. It'd scrape atmospheric dust and use antimatter chain reaction annihilation to generate heat from the complete destruction of matter (i.e. 100% matter-energy conversion). Then you use a thermocouple or heat engine.

Re:Power (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206832)

Then 40-93% of the waste heat ( 2-2.8 GW from Iron Man's suit) would need to be dissipated. I think this would not be possible even if Iron Man himself ablated.

Re:Power (4, Funny)

Sockatume (732728) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206932)

Yeah, or you could just put a wizard in there.

Re:Power (1)

Yvan256 (722131) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207038)

When are nanotubes going to bring that huge battery increase I keep hearing about?!

In about 10 years!

Tagged (3, Funny)

bluefoxlucid (723572) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206404)

+samusaran

Look out Spiderman (3, Funny)

Tekfactory (937086) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206410)

"Inside a prosthetic shell of metal and hydraulics, Raytheon test engineer Rex Jameson is putting an XOS-2 exoskeleton through its paces."

How many of his kids is J. Jonah going to send after Spidey?

defense spending cuts should be happening (4, Insightful)

Dan667 (564390) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206428)

The only thing I thought the whole time I watched this is US defense spending is way to over bloated to have this kind of useless spending.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206560)

The goal, theoretically, would be to save money. You could eliminate tens of thousands of military positions, saving countless billions of dollars. Of course, you'd end up with a bunch of unemployed workers with no useful training dumped on the streets.

The down side would be how much each of these cost, and what kinds of maintenance would be required. Saving 1-2 man-years per suit that might require 1/4-1/2 a man year of [more highly trained/expensive] labor per year to keep it running, plus the power costs, seems to suggest a very, very long payback period.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (4, Insightful)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206672)

The goal, in practice, is to make tons of money for the military contractors, who don't really give a shit how well this technology works in the field as long as they get paid. Eg. David Brooks of DHB Industries.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206566)

A technology that allows 1 soldier to do the work of 2 or 3 is useless? How would you recommend spending the money?

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (4, Funny)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206684)

A technology that allows 1 woman to do the work of 2? Then I could have threesomes with just my wife and I!

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (4, Funny)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206878)

Actually that just means she doesn't need you.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (3, Insightful)

OzPeter (195038) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206708)

A technology that allows 1 soldier to do the work of 2 or 3 is useless? How would you recommend spending the money?

How about not having the 2 or 3 in the first place?

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206570)

While I wouldn't necessarily disagree, I could see this type of suit being really useful for industrial applications so maybe we'll see some additional value from this research.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1)

Entropius (188861) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206580)

No kidding.

And this isn't even about defense. Build as many of these things as you like, I guarantee I could put that money to better use in building an army. RPG rounds are a whole lot cheaper than Space Marines, or whatever they're trying to build.

Raytheon is all about getting contracts to do bullshit, independent of any actual real military need.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (5, Insightful)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206688)

There's an old saying among military officers: 'amateurs study tactics, professionals study logistics.' Go ahead and use the money to buy more guns. Find out what happens when they run out of ammo. If the US armed forces can resupply two or three times faster than another military because of advances made in logistics (like this one), then that's a formidable real advantage.

I'm glad the Pentagon has a broader perspective than yours. Modern armies, scratch that, ALL armies can only function on the back of efficient logistical support. The more efficient and effective that support, the more advantage that army has, even in the face of superior numbers or a harsh environment.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1)

ginbot462 (626023) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206742)

Here's you an example ... a bit dated though.

Yam [wikipedia.org]

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1)

ginbot462 (626023) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206814)

Correcting myself - I guess "Yam" referred to the com network only. I can't find a special name for his supply network. I assume they actually used the same routes for both - excluding passes that weren't large enough for carts. Still, Genghis put a lot of emphasis and planning on his supply network. He kind of had too.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206904)

Although I agree with your post about logistics, this suit isn't an effective use of money. Spend it on vehicles (trucks, ships, aircraft, and forklifts) then. If you haven't noticed, we don't have any money any more.

As for quantity vs quality, history shows that industrial capacity and manpower are the two deciding factors.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206752)

There's a lot more to an effective army than just having big guns.

Think of this suit as basically a smaller version of a forklift truck. That's not to say that either of these things can't be used as weapons, but they're hardly practical for that purpose. They are, however, good at moving heavy stuff around.

I dislike armies and the results of using armies in general, but military research often results in cool things for the rest of us to use at least.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1, Troll)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206636)

The only thing I thought the whole time I watched this is US defense spending is way to over bloated to have this kind of useless spending.

Which means you have absolutely no idea what it costs to recruit, train, field, and retain modern military personnel. If you can deploy three or four fewer people to an airstrip someplace, and unload a bunch of emergency medical supplies in a fraction of the time, you're reducing costs, not adding to them. Of course you know that, and you're just looking for some junior high school level The Military Is Bad No Matter What slashkarma.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (5, Insightful)

CraftyJack (1031736) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206772)

If you can deploy three or four fewer people to an airstrip someplace, and unload a bunch of emergency medical supplies in a fraction of the time, you're reducing costs, not adding to them.

Color me skeptical. If you really are deploying fewer people, great. But I suspect that something like this has a serious logistics tail. If it takes three people to operate and support the thing, that's no good. If you have to wait two days to get it working again when it breaks down, you're back to square one - without the number of people you need to accomplish the task at hand.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (3, Insightful)

ScentCone (795499) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206838)

Remember: time is money, too. If this is more nimble than a standard forklift, you might have that cargo aircraft sitting on the runway for a few minutes less, guzzling less fuel, and holding up fewer other incoming flights. There are a lot of indirect costs avoided by speeding up logistics operations. If it takes an operator and two support guys to do work in half the time, compared to a fork lift driver and one support guy, it might still be cheaper.

If there are things you can do with something like this which you simply cannot do with a forklift (which seems very likely - especially in rough terrain and lots of emergency response type scenearios), then you might avoid the entire cost of (and personnel involved in) enhancing a remote airstrip.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206916)

Ridiculous. People are the cheapest robots there are, they self-repair and even self-reproduce. This kind of technotoy is 100% related to funneling money from one friend to another. Find whose penis is in whose rectum and you've got the answer.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1)

Alarindris (1253418) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206644)

I think this is more along the lines of what we should be doing. Anything that makes for less troops is a good thing.

If..... (1)

AnonymousClown (1788472) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206746)

The only thing I thought the whole time I watched this is US defense spending is way to over bloated to have this kind of useless spending.

I agree up to a point. OTH, if this leads to an "Iron Man" type of suit, then I'm all for it. Wars are now going to be urban fights mixed in with civilians - aircraft, missiles, and even drones are too blunt of an instrument for handling these types of battles.

What I'm saying is more money should be spent on things like this instead of Cold War era type of weapons - i.e. F-22.

We have limited resources and we need to be smart about our spending.

Re:defense spending cuts should be happening (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207054)

Research and development looks useless until it bears fruit. If the outcome were known, it wouldn't be "research".

Things a tethered powered exoskeleton could be used for (ignore teh drama and consider it a piece of equipment like a backhoe or forklift):

Vehicle maintenance:
Wheeled combat vehicles often have massive tires, while tracked vehicles have heavy steel track. An exo at the shop would be able to replace or supplement lots of specialised equipment and work faster. Being able to "exo-manually" manipulate heavy components would speed maintenance and repair considerably.

Fortification:
Filling HESCO bastion, digging in, etc in areas where using conventional machinery is awkward would be a very useful app. Use exo to carry (running) portable genset or drag it on a small trailer. Exo can then dig in, help position equipment. and go back and forth toting the trailer which could also hold ammo.

Instead of seeing the thing as sci-fi fappery, look at it as another tool you may years from now be able to rent like a dozer, backhoe, or crane.

Fold? (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206436)

Every time you fold something, it doubles.

So 17-fold means the suits amplifies his strength by 2^17=131072.

ALL BOW BEFORE HIM

Re:Fold? (1)

Overzeetop (214511) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206586)

That depends entirely on how you fold it.

Re:Fold? (1)

icebraining (1313345) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206716)

I, for one, welcome our new folded overlords.

Re:Fold? (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206782)

That depends if you fold it in the center each time.

Twofold means double, threefold means triple, etc.

FTA - ``tethered to hydraulic power'' (1)

WillAdams (45638) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206438)

Until there's a meaningful way to store the energy in a format light enough to be carried by the suit / bearer, it's nothing more than a technology demo --- a cool one, but not useful in the field yet.

William

Re:FTA - ``tethered to hydraulic power'' (4, Insightful)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206482)

Considering that the proposed use right now is for faster cargo handling, the power could be provided by the truck hauling the cargo. The suits don't have a battlefield purpose yet, so tethering isn't much an issue when you consider that everything these are likely to be used for is within feet of a big vehicle of some kind.

RELATED FAIL (3, Informative)

PHP Wolf (629571) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206444)

See the "Related Topics" on the left side of the article? "DC Comics Inc.". Way to fail, CNN. Iron Man is a Marvel Comics franchise.

Show me some real "wood breaking" (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206458)

I appreciate the time tested parlor trick of breaking wood, however I can guarantee you that you cannot build a house with the strength of that lumber and expect it to stand up. The official engineering capacity of that wood, in that failure mode, is zero. It's called cross grain bending, and it is forbidden to count structural support in that orientation.

I will be impressed when the suit can break through the center of a single piece of southern pine, 3" thick, held between to pinned (or fixed, for that mater) supports. Then again, you'd need something with orders of magnitude more power.

Re:Show me some real "wood breaking" (1)

khallow (566160) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206564)

Then again, you'd need something with orders of magnitude more power.

That's actually not that hard, just have some capacitors provide short term bursts of power. For the demonstration in the story, you'd probably also need a lot more mass or some sort of bracing too, else you'd just push yourself around rather than break the wood.

Re:Show me some real "wood breaking" (1)

immakiku (777365) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206652)

Eh? The bracing normal humans use when punching is the push of our foot into the ground. If this suit is as physiologically advanced as it seems, it can very well do the same thing.

It's All Coming Together... (1)

ginbot462 (626023) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206462)

Finally ... Rift's world is almost here, just need the Boom Gun, some Bedazzling, and to invade South America.

Re:It's All Coming Together... (1)

Tekfactory (937086) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206488)

Navy already has the Boom Gun, you need a man portable POWER supply.

Re:It's All Coming Together... (1)

ginbot462 (626023) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206690)

Oh ok, and the Navy will leverage their Nuclear expertise for that - making the final product debut from their branch. Now I understand why they were called "Glitter Boys".

Yuo fail @i7? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206492)

duri8g which I Love of two is task. Research like they are Come

Starship troopers (1)

Nidi62 (1525137) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206508)

Stuff like this seems more like the power armor from Starship Troopers than Iron-Man. Negative feedback, increased strength, assisted running, etc. It's all there. Just strap a Y-rack on the back and some other weapons, and there you go. Now, if only we can find a way to add the jump jets, that would be awesome. I guess it's just a lot more pop-culturey to call them Iron Man suits, unfortunately.

Three inches of pine board? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206590)

Gee, really? I knew some kids in my high-school karate classes who could do similar things with nothing more than a little technique and focus. I have personally photographed some older, tougher guys punching through 4 - 6 inches of concrete (though of course these are thinner slabs held separate from each other.) Maybe punching through those boards the way he does in the video requires a 17-fold increase in strength, but you could just teach a guy proper board-breaking alignment and get the same result. Make him punch a hole in a telephone pole or a sidewalk or something.

Expect to hear from Stark Industries (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206620)

We've seen lots of competitors to Stark Industries try to make cheap knockoff imitators. But unless they have mastered the arc reactor technology, I don't think this will be competitive to their offering. If they insist on using the word Iron Man in their promotional material they should expect to hear from Stark Industries' attorneys.

1 man does the work of 3. And at the cost of 50. (3, Insightful)

VShael (62735) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206628)

Yeah, that makes perfect sense.

Re:1 man does the work of 3. And at the cost of 50 (2, Informative)

Barrinmw (1791848) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206676)

Buy one suit, military keeps it repaired for 20 years, 20 years of 2 people in the military > 1 suit.

Re:1 man does the work of 3. And at the cost of 50 (0, Flamebait)

VShael (62735) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206686)

Of course. Because the average soldier will wear this suit every day for 20 years.

Are you high?

Re:1 man does the work of 3. And at the cost of 50 (2, Insightful)

Barrinmw (1791848) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206726)

If its your job to carry stuff around every day, then yes, they will wear it everyday. I am sure the army has plenty of grunt positions within supply that required moving around lots of boxes.

Re:1 man does the work of 3. And at the cost of 50 (1)

ElectricTurtle (1171201) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206770)

Yeah, just like all the other equipment the military fields. I mean really, how do they expect those tanks to be of any value when they aren't crewed EVERY HOUR of EVERY DAY by the SAME PEOPLE?! Just like how you know when one person leaves the military, the vehicle he used is decommissioned with him.

Or at least that's how it apparently works in your tiny, tiny mind (this just in! When one person stops using a piece of equipment, ANOTHER PERSON *gasp!* can then use the same equipment! HOLY FUCKING SHIT!), and stop projecting your constant recreational drug use onto others.

Re:1 man does the work of 3. And at the cost of 50 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206704)

You can hire 50 guys over a long period for $150,000? I think the feds might want a word, not to mention the unions...

Re:1 man does the work of 3. And at the cost of 50 (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206796)

You have no clue how much it costs to employ and move actual people.

When you add up the costs of recruiting, training, and paying (both in $ and in things like medical care and other benefits) a soldier, if you can spend a few hundred thousand on something that removes a couple soldiers, you have saved money.

Moreover, you can put this in a box and leave it around at nearly zero cost between missions; your real live person has to be paid all the time.

Moreover, transporting one person and one box of mech-suit to the middle of nowhere is probably way cheaper than transporting three persons to the middle of nowhere, because you don't have to keep shipping in food and water to the mech suit (assuming you have a good local power source, which admittedly is quite an assumption).

Re:1 man does the work of 3. And at the cost of 50 (2, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206868)

depending on the job, then yeah, it's worht the cost.

A jet does the work for 10,000 mean at the cost of 150,000. well worth it.

I'm not impressed (1)

Locke2005 (849178) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206640)

Get back to me when you can actually run an Iron Man Triathalon in one of these. Until then, please refer to it as a powered exoskeleton, not an "Iron Man suit"!

Re:I'm not impressed (2, Funny)

kaizokuace (1082079) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206712)

It also does not fly, nor does it rain hellfire.

Re:I'm not impressed (2, Insightful)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206850)

but it does use the power of the transistor.

Iron Man? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206656)

Like the phrase "iPod killer", why do I get the feeling that referring to this technology as "the real Iron Man!!" is going to get over repeated my the media in the next few years.

I know I'm already sick of them calling it that. ....still cool though.

Put his foot in it (1)

dgriff (1263092) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206660)

Wait until he puts his robot hydraulic foot on an IED.

\m/ (1)

quintessencesluglord (652360) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206714)

So the Sabbath reunion is underway?

Kewl.

Pine boards... (2, Informative)

junglebeast (1497399) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206718)

Are extremely easy to break, which is why we use them in tae kwon do. Little kids have to break them for testing. Adults would often punch or kick through 3 or 4 boards like this. Not impressed.

Re:Pine boards... (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206842)

ah yes, tae kwon do. The training of young peple to break boards in the least practical way as possible.

just say "tae kwon don't"

Re:Pine boards... (1)

powerlord (28156) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207052)

Not just TKD, most Martial Arts start with pine.

Kids can break 1" (with a little training, and its great motivation), and adults can break 3-4 with training, but the ability for a person to break 4 or so with NO training, IS impressive.

Heck, when I was practicing regularly I was going through 5 of them (with hands or feet), and its still impressive for an untrained person to have that ability.

Re:Pine boards... (1)

jandrese (485) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207070)

You have little kids that can punch through 3" thick boards? Are you sure you're not from Krypton or something?

donkey kong (1)

muckracer (1204794) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206736)

> the company hopes to see 'Iron Man' suits deployed in the field by 2015.

Yes! THAT'S how you win 'the heart and minds' of the conquered:

Prisoner: "What did you do with my donkey?"

Army guy: "Oh...Iron Joe here threw it out of the way while we were storming your house. But don't worry...it should come down to earth any minute now..."

The war, it was hell (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 3 years ago | (#34206826)

had to beat a man to death with my K&R book and then warm my hands overt his body before it could cool.

Can we stop with the 'war' this and 'war' that?

War is not the only application for this. (4, Insightful)

MsGeek (162936) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207036)

The Japanese have been developing this for decades. They knew a demographic bomb was going to go off, and they knew that nurses were going to need some help in dealing with the elderly. So there are now production power suits geared towards assisting nurses in lifting patients.

Also there is a very strong possibility this technology can be applied to assistive systems for paraplegics and quadriplegics. Imagine someone who was "sentenced to the Chair" for the rest of their lives being able to walk again. I mean, neither application is particularly sexy, not like super-soldiers and being able to do the last battle in Aliens for real, but I would say that this would be a boon for humanity far greater than any military application.

RIP OFF (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34206866)

The whole thing is rip off of a Japanese invention for disabled people.

Video (1)

Andy Smith (55346) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207016)

The video in the linked story is really poor. What's the one thing you want to see in a video about a guy in an exoskeleton? You want to see him doing stuff. The video has a couple of quick shots of him punching and doing push-ups, and that's it. Poor.

I wonder.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 3 years ago | (#34207028)

....if this suit is entirely mechanical, or if it requires the loading of some sort of firmware OS? Of course, ANY OS, firmware or software, is a potential security risk in ways that physical lockdowns won't easily accommodate. Imagine, on the battlefield where these are deployed, the enemy manages to release an exploit that causes CPU failure in these things, or something along those lines. You start out with a logistics team that can push materials 3 times faster than the enemy, the exploit is triggered, and you suddenly find a logistics team that can't even push open a barn door from the inside! Enemy wins. Not a pleasant thought.

Can you hurt yourself with it? (1)

arshadk (1928690) | more than 3 years ago | (#34207064)

I wonder if it's possible to punch yourself in the face by accident...
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