Company Denies its Robots Feed on the Dead

Yup. Probably one of the greatest headlines ever, and a wonderfully surreal PR nightmare.

Depending which neck of the interwoods you lurk in, you may have heard of a self-powered battlefield robot that would power itself by ingesting biomass – including dead bodies. (Which made me wonder, what if you’re not dead? And wake up to find a robot has eaten half your leg…)

In any case. The robot’s makers are taking steps to reassure people that they have been misinformed.

RTI’s patent pending robotic system will be able to find, ingest and extract energy from biomass in the environment. Despite the far-reaching reports that this includes “human bodies,” the public can be assured that the engine Cyclone has developed to power the EATR runs on fuel no scarier than twigs, grass clippings and wood chips – small, plant-based items for which RTI’s robotic technology is designed to forage. Desecration of the dead is a war crime under Article 15 of the Geneva Conventions, and is certainly not something sanctioned by DARPA, Cyclone or RTI.

Which I guess is more reassuring than the alternative.


Oh, and, what a difference a sunny day makes, eh?

One Response to “Company Denies its Robots Feed on the Dead”

  1.   Joey
    August 1st, 2009 | 11:22 am

    Why would it be worse for the dead to be eaten by robots than by all the things that currently eat them?