ADVERTISEMENT
  About the SA Blog Network













Observations

Observations


Opinion, arguments & analyses from the editors of Scientific American
Observations HomeAboutContact

Flying Orb Built by Japan’s Ministry of Defense [Video]

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.


Email   PrintPrint



About the size of a beach ball, this flying sphere takes off vertically and hovers in place, but can zip along horizontally at speeds of up to 60 km/h (about 37 mph). It has gyroscopic control that keeps it stable even when the presenter smacks it on the side:

Perhaps the most amazing aspect of the spherical design is that the orb can land then roll along the floor. The model could be used for search and rescue operations, according to the video. (The ministry of defense presumably has some interest in hovering reconnaissance drones, as well.)

The research arm of Japan’s ministry of defense built the prototype using off-the-shelf parts for about $1,400, according to the video.

No word if version 2.0 will be equipped with the laser beams necessary for lightsaber training.

(via LATimes.com)

About the Author: Michael Moyer is the editor in charge of space and physics coverage at Scientific American. Follow on Twitter @mmoyr.

The views expressed are those of the author and are not necessarily those of Scientific American.





Rights & Permissions

Comments 1 Comment

Add Comment
  1. 1. Dredd 5:35 pm 10/28/2011

    Quite interesting. Perhaps they should team up with the people who reports say successfully tested a cold fusion energy generator and the client purchased it.

    http://blogdredd.blogspot.com/2011/10/cold-fusion-plant-is-being-tested-today.html

    Link to this

Add a Comment
You must sign in or register as a ScientificAmerican.com member to submit a comment.

More from Scientific American

Scientific American Holiday Sale

Give a Gift &
Get a Gift - Free!

Give a 1 year subscription as low as $14.99

Subscribe Now! >

X

Email this Article

X