Military Robots

Military robots can be traced back to the Second World War when simple machines which were human controlled were used. Technological advancement has facilitated the development of modern military robots which help soldiers in the assessing of the level of threat among other functions.

Categorization of Military Robots

Military robots are placed in to different broad categories which differ in the manner in which the robots are controlled. The different categories of military robots include:

1.     Unmanned Ground Vehicles

Developed using the technology used to create self-driving cars, unmanned ground vehicles operate on the ground autonomously. They make use of visual sensors to assess their immediate environment and make a decision of the next step or relay the information to a human operator located elsewhere who gives it the next command. Unmanned ground vehicles are commonly used in the military in areas where it is too dangerous for the soldiers. With advanced wheels and tracks, the unmanned ground vehicles are suited for all terrains enabling them to access areas that are impossible for the soldiers to access.  They help the soldiers to do a reconnaissance of a place while identifying people or objects of interest. They might also be used to disarm explosives without putting the lives of the soldiers at risk.

2.     Unmanned aerial vehicle

Unmanned aerial vehicle which is commonly known as a drone refers to an aircraft which flies on its own without a human pilot. It can either be controlled remotely by a human being or controlled by the preset commands on the computers installed in the drone. They are used in the military for mapping out an area before a mission, providing aerial surveillance of a target as well as combat support in case the ground team needs back-up.

3.     Remotely operated underwater vehicle

Remotely operated underwater vehicle (ROV) is a tethered military vehicle that is linked to host ship. It is unoccupied and controlled by a crew based on the host ship or on nearby land. Equipped with bright lights and video cameras, remotely operated underwater vehicle are used to carry out threat assessment at the depths of the oceans, rescue missions as well as mining exploration. They may also have magnetometers and water samplers to collect sample of water temperature, density and other variables.  They make use of the tether cable to relay the information back to the operators who interpret the data and make conclusions.

Benefits of military robots

Unlike the benefits that other industries draw from using robots, the military sector has a unique set of benefits for automation using robots. These benefits include;

·         Life saving

Robots are able to intervene in dangerous situations such as detonation of bombs which poses a risk to the soldiers. Robots can also withstand any damage caused by bombs or weapons helping to save the life of the brave men who have sacrificed their lives for their country.

·         Efficiency

Military robots are designed to execute particular tasks and they are able to do this at higher level of accuracy and efficiency. Machines have been proven to handle weapons with better than trained soldiers influencing the outcome of any battle.

The future expectations of military robots

The adoption of robots in the military is expanding at an increasing rate and it is important for governments to consider long term robotic applications rather than quick solutions to the prevailing problems. Identifying efficient but safe robots for military use should be on top of the list to ensure that the soldiers are safe while using the robots.

With advancement in the technology, it is expected that military robots will undergo a revolution. If robotic manufacturers apply the technology used by to develop collaborative military robots, they can ease the work done by the soldiers by allowing them to work alongside the robots. This human-robot integration can definitely go a long way to win wars by utilizing the strong attributes of both parties.