Korean Scientists Have Designed A Velociraptor Robot That's Nearly As Fast As Cheetah
Researchers at the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) have put together a sprinting robot that's nearly as fast as Boston Dynamics' Cheetah - and infinitely cooler, besides. See, Boston Dynamics modeled its machine on the fastest robot alive in the modern world. KAIST, meanwhile, decided to look a little bit further back for inspiration. More specifically, they pulled from the Cretaceous.
Ladies and gentlemen, say hello to Raptor.
Modeled after the velociraptor (I mean the real-world one animal, which is more akin to a bird than a nine-foot tall engine of death and destruction), Raptor has clocked in at a maximum speed of 46 kilometers per hour (28.5 mile per hour). That's not quite on the same level as Cheetah's 47 kilometers per hour. but it's still significantly faster than the world's fastest human, Usain Bolt. His recorded top speed is a paltry 44.72 kilometers per hour.
So, yeah. What that means is that Raptor is faster than Usain Bolt. And it's definitely faster than you.
Now, I'll wager that at least a few of you are pretty unimpressed by KAIST's efforts. After all, Cheetah's still faster, right? They failed to show up Boston Dynamics, right?
Not exactly. See, this was Raptor's first speed test. If we compare it against Cheetah's first speed test back in 2012 (which clocked in at 30 kilometers per hour), then it's already significantly faster than its chief competitor. Give it a few months, and it'll very likely overtake Cheetah in the speed department.
The lightweight little robot moves on two feet which consist of carbon-fiber prosthetic blades; each blade is attached to a lightweight leg equipped with a single motor and a tendon to allow for better efficiency. In order to run on two legs, Raptor's been equipped with a 'tail;' a pole affixed to the robot's side that swings as it walks.
I'm just keeping my fingers crossed that Raptor isn't used for military purposes. War's troubling enough without having to account for legions of terrifyingly-fast robotic hunting droids.