Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Navy Wants Doc-Bots, Robo-Ambulances

Not all of the military's robot research goes into creating unfeeling killing machines. Some of them are here to heal, like the Navy's plan to create a medical robot to treat troops carried by drones.

The Navy envisions its medic-bot actually diagnosing and managing a number of "medically complex, life-threatening clinical events" for more than six hours — to be done either autonomously or with the remote assistance of a human caregiver. To do some of that critical management, ACCS would come equipped with its own drug kit, including "epinephrine, phenylephrine, dopamine, vasopressin, paralytics" among others.

The medic-bot will be a tiny little bot. The Navy wants it to be 30 pounds, max, and should be able to fit into helicopters easily.

But the Navy doesn't just want a robo-doc. It's also looking for an unmanned ambulance — one that flies, preferably. The Office of Naval Research says it expects that "unmanned ground or air vehicles" will be available to carry wounded troops or disaster victims in the future and that their medic-bot will "validate effective patient monitoring and control" on them while in transit.

Read more at navy-wants-doc-bots-robo-ambulances

NOTE: If these military technologies succeed you can bet they will quickly be applied to civilian use, just like medevac helicopters (air ambulances) . Medevac helicopters proved their value in the Korean and Vietnam wars and were then rapidly adopted in community hospitals.

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