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The U.S. Government is Building ‘Iron Man’ Military Body Armor! All Iron Man geeks are pinching themselves right now, and for good reason! This is by far the most exciting technology news we have received this year. There is a dedicated team of combat veterans, tech experts and a Canadian researcher working around the clock to produce high-tech gear for elite troops. The Wall Street Journal says the companies in the mix to assist with the equipment include “prop makers, small tech firms and such defense titans as Raytheon Co., Lockheed Martin Corp. and General Dynamics.” The project called TALOS, will rely on Legacy Effects, the company who worked in the Marvel film franchise to help design and 3D print the prototypes for the body armor.

Iron Man!

Iron Man!

The development program was initiated in December 2012, when a member of the SEAL Team Six was shot and killed while they were raiding a compound in eastern Afghanistan to free a Colorado doctor held hostage by militants. The Head of U.S. Special Operations Command who oversaw the SEAL Team Six raid in Pakistan that killed Osama bin Laden, was a key shot caller in the start-up process of the military suits.

There are currently only three members of Special Operations Forces taking part in the testing. The process of a tailor-made armoured body suits seems rather daunting, but the sophisticated computerized body scans ensured perfect fits with mannequins suited up for good measure. Marvel’s geek genius development team reckon that the suit could weigh as much as 400 pounds, requiring a powered exoskeleton to move with speed and agility. Damn, that really sounds like something straight out of Crytek’s Crysis. Imagine an Iron Man armored Nano-muscle suit hybrid…that would be epic!

Images courtesy of Wall Street Journal

Images courtesy of Wall Street Journal

The trick is powering up a suit that weighs as much as two buffed marines. Pentagon researchers estimate that the suit will require a hefty load of batteries, 365 pounds to be exact, to power the suit they have in mind. The alternative solution involves small engines, designed for drones, much like Tony Stark’s suit.

Co-founder of Ekso Bionics Russ Angold said:

“Hollywood has definitely made the Iron Man suit impossibly thin, impossibly light, impossibly agile and impossibly energy efficient,”

Angold’s company primarily designs exoskeletons for medical use. It seems they are prepared to push the boundaries by asking the right question to further the technology.

He added:

“So we’re really trying to solve the problem and ask the question: What would Iron Man look like if it was real?”

Peter Singer, a senior with the New America Foundation’s Future of War project says there is still a long way to go before the suits will be available for practical use.

“You can see the long-term vision but, for now, much of it remains in the realm of science fiction and entertainment,”

“There’s a long way to go, but the technical barriers are not insurmountable.”

Check out the clip

Concept art

Images courtesy of Wall Street Journal

Images courtesy of Wall Street Journal

Images courtesy of Wall Street Journal

Images courtesy of Wall Street Journal