Meet the CIA’s robotic animal agents: Charlie the spy fish and the robo-dragonfly
The CIA recently created accounts on Flickr and YouTube. Most of what’s been uploaded is underwhelming and weirdly mundane — for example, you can learn about a satisfying career as a K-9 bomb-sniffing dog — but there are some oddly intriguing mechanical animals on display, namely the robo-fish Charlie and a “dragonfly insectothopter,” which the CIA claims was never used in the field. Click through to watch videos of these spybots in motion.
Here’s the CIA’s description of Charlie:
CIA’s Office of Advanced Technologies and Programs developed the Unmanned Underwater Vehicle (UUV) fish to study aquatic robot technology. The UUV fish contains a pressure hull, ballast system, and communications system in the body and a propulsion system in the tail. It is controlled by a wireless line-of-sight radio handset.
The robot dragonfly is a super impressive piece of engineering, especially considering it was built almost 20 years ago. Makes you wonder what sort of tiny flying robots they have now that haven’t been declassified.