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January 8th, 2014

Often in our media-soaked culture, we confront the chicken-and-egg conundrum, as we encounter things—in books, movies, etc.—that eerily foretell later events and inventions. Or maybe not. For example: Which came first, the Army’s first sketches of laser guns or Star Trek phasers? And doesn’t Dr. McCoy’s Tricorder look just like our iPad rental? Truth be told, Star Trek creator Gene Roddenberry built a complete alternative reality that we still seem to be decorating with his ’60s visions.

At least half the computer rental inventory on Earth has slots for flash memory like SDHC, which looks awfully like the “data card” that Mr. Spock or Bones would stick in a blinking console from time to time. Happily, the Star Trek fashion styles never caught on, but the same visionary spirit has contributed to the evolution of high-powered production and post tools like render farms, as well as computers, tablets, smart devices of all kinds, and robots—Army robots, no less. Sci-fi defense research continues apace, and here are your first two examples.

Cargo Robots – Army Style

Cargo robots are modern, high-tech versions of pack mules. In fact,  they are already in use commercially, and the latest military model has proven quite stable with four powered legs that outperform treads or wheels over difficult terrain. At 4 mph, they can walk all day carrying 340 lbs. and managing 35-degree slopes.

Data coming from ground/leg/joint monitors, laser gyroscopes, and “stereo vision capture” are all routed to an onboard computer, which keeps the robot balanced and on course. Soldiers can program and control the robot via wireless, conceivably from a smartphone or MacBook Pro. As the military advances in this direction, robots start benefiting from economies of scale and prices start dropping in the commercial sector.

Laser Guns – Navy Style

Laser guns (cannon, specifically) are apparently in use already by the U.S. Navy. The R&D continues, but SSLs (or Solid State Lasers) are already providing short-range defense with super-powered pulses or focused beams that have a current range of four miles. The system is incredibly accurate, tracks flying objects (identified or not) regardless of evasive measures or maneuvers, and can hit targets going some 300 mph. It is a perfect defense against suicide boats, anti-ship missiles, weaponized drones, and other airborne threats.

Our Sci-fi Technology Rentals

Though we are not in the business of offering sci-fi defense solutions, we are suited to get your production office or post-production project set-up with technology rentals you need to get the job done. Contact us at  (877) 266-7725 to learn more about our products and services.

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