The military has plans for a new kind of drone robot that will wander the wastelands of future battlefields, scooping up organic debris — such as dead bodies — and burning them to fuel their advance. The call it an EATR: Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot.
Wonderful: your most horrible military-death-cyborg-synergy dreams come true.A Maryland company under contract with the Pentagon is developing a robot that can burn organic material and use collected debris as fuel — including, but not limited to, things like sticks, grass, debris — and dead bodies. Fox News reports:Robotic Technology Inc.’s Energetically Autonomous Tactical Robot — that’s right, “EATR” — “can find, ingest, and extract energy from biomass in the environment (and other organically-based energy sources), as well as use conventional and alternative fuels (such as gasoline, heavy fuel, kerosene, diesel, propane, coal, cooking oil, and solar) when suitable,” reads the company’s Web site.That “biomass” and “other organically-based energy sources” wouldn’t necessarily be limited to plant material — animal and human corpses contain plenty of energy, and they’d be plentiful in a war zone.EATR will be powered by the Waste Heat Engine developed by Cyclone Power Technology of Pompano Beach, Fla., which uses an “external combustion chamber” burning up fuel to heat up water in a closed loop, generating electricity.The advantages to the military are that the robot would be extremely flexible in fuel sources and could roam on its own for months, even years, without having to be refueled or serviced.Upon the EATR platform, the Pentagon could build all sorts of things — a transport, an ambulance, a communications center, even a mobile gunship.
Note the Pentagon could use the EATR as the foundation for any number of battlefield vehicles, be they ambulances, transports or actual weapons-oriented machines.Robotic Technology, Inc. provides more palatable details about their project — which they describe as simply a foraging robot. Cadavers aren’t mentioned.