Thursday, June 10, 2010

Engineers convince ground robots to come together and form flying machine.

It's true - the future gets a little bit closer every day.

For some, that's not such a great prospect, but for Voltron fans at least, news out of Switzerland this week will have them thinking it can't come fast enough

Engineers from the Federal Institute of Technology have built a flying drone that can rebuild itself.

Called the Distributed Flight Array (DAR), the flying platform is enough to bring a tear to the eye of those who remember the giant robot made of vehicles that came together whenever a giant evil adversary presented itself.

Instead of 15 cars, buses and planes, the DFR is made up of four hexagonal modules, although the engineers promise they'll have at least 12 working together within months.

Each of the modules are self-contained with motors, power and on-board computers capable of driving and flying them in their own right.

On the ground, they happily wheel around individually. Give them the signal, though, and they pull together randomly to form a single entity, capable of lifting off the ground.

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