A robotic pack mule being developed for the Pentagon by Boston Dynamics could give U.S. troops a leg up in terrain too rough even for Military vehicles. The mechanized four-legged robot, capable of carrying all the gear Soldiers and Marines might need in combat, still faces two years of on-the-ground testing, but it appears to be the high-tech equivalent of the pack mule that the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, or DARPA, has been looking for. “A legged robot can unburden dismounted squad members by carrying their gear, autonomously following them through rugged terrain, and interpreting verbal and visual commands,” DARPA said in a release about the project. “Most of the earth is inaccessible to vehicles, wheeled or track,” said Marc Raibert, the president of Boston Dynamics, “but the animal kingdom can go anywhere with legs. So the idea is to go anywhere animals can go.” Raibert’s  company has been working for the last few years on DARPA’s goal and has had success with its biologically inspired robots. Read the full story here.

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