The Russian Armed Forces may receive mind-controlled dual-use exoskeletons within five years, TASS reported last week.
“I think that in about five years we will have the neural interface to control exoskeletons and prostheses through the electric potentials of the brain,” according to Aleksander Kulish, head of the medical equipment development and manufacturing department of Russia’s United Instrument Manufacturing Corporation (UIMC).
UIMC is a subsidiary of the Russian state corporation Rostec (formerly Russian Technologies) specialized in researching, designing and building military automated control and dual-use robotic systems among a host of other defense-related R&D tasks.
It is unclear whether UIMC is working on a full-body exoskeleton, or a partial suit just covering the lower-body frame. However, the exoskeleton would reportedly allow soldiers to carry loads of up to 300 kilogram of military equipment. Also, “[w]ith this a soldier can perform incredible jumps, move and throw heavy objects. This is the future,” Kulish stated.
“An exoskeleton is essentially a ‘wearable robot’, an external skeleton-like structure that follows the shape of the wearer’s body and partially encases it. It has joints and other mechanisms allowing it to repeat and strengthen the body’s natural movements,” RT summarized Moscow’s new cutting edge technology.
Kulish also explained that the current neuro interface allows the operator to control the robot suit through visual images: “For example, a person imagines a black square, and the [exoskeleton’s] hand unclenches, and if they imagine a red square, it clenches.”