Last month Boston Dynamics was asked by DARPA to turn their LS3 robot into a silent, bulletproof unit. But that isn’t the only robot Boston is working on right now, as they also have an all terrain running robot called WildCat.
New footage of WildCat has been posted on Boston Dynamics‘ YouTube page, which you can watch below. It looks quite similar to LS3, but is actually a smaller version of the Cheetah robot. Cheetah can run at 28mph while tethered. WildCat can only manage 16mph, but does so untethered.
As you can see, WildCat uses a combination of galloping and bounding to achieve such speeds, and also manages to recover from a stumble easily and quickly. Now imagine this speeding across a hostile area carrying supplies on its back for the troops. It’s like something you’d expect to see in the movies, not real life, but Boston Dynamics is certainly doing everything it can to push robot technology forward.
WildCat is a work in progress and also funded by DARPA through its M3 program, so there’s every chance it will end up getting faster and more stable. It already looks pretty capable, but I’d like to see it galloping across uneven ground to get a sense of how it really performs. And just like with LS3, it needs a better power solution that isn’t as noisy.