Showing posts with the label #insects

DARPA's Insect Allies

Turning Insects into Weapons for Good Protecting the Nation's Food Supplies The US Defense Department's Advanced Research Projects Agency - DARPA- has a research project straight out of science fiction.  It's called Insect Allies.  The idea is to use insects, such as leafhoppers, aphids and white flies, to protect the nation's food supplies against drought, crop disease and bioterrorism. Controversial Insect Armies DARPA expects to achieve its "Insect Allies" goals by infecting the insects with engineered mutations and viruses that can be passed on to the plants to make them stronger or more resistant to biological attacks.  This project involves brand new technologies.  The concern and controversy is that the technologies could be used as weapons to destroy the enemy's crop supplies.  DARPA response:  most new technologies can be weaponized but that is not the purpose or intent of Insect Allies.  The goal is to protect the US food supply.

Robot Insect Spies

Ambitious US Government Robotic Program Source:  DARPA HI-MENS Robotic Program Spying Insec ts You might call them Cyborg Insect Spies.  The US Defense Department's Advanced Research Projects Agency DARPA has a novel, science fiction like robotic research program underway.  It's called the HI-MEMS program. Insect Controlled in Flight by Implants Scientists have explored using a variety of insects as part of the program.  They have put implants on flying moths and beetles.  Using the implants, researchers are able to stimulate insect brains and actually control them in flight. End Game The potential use of these robotic insects is fascinating.  The goal is to deploy them on missions in the field to gain access to areas not reachable by traditional robots and humans.  This is an important scientific research program that DARPA is actively pursuing.