We all remember the excitement of the world’s media, when at the end of 2015, Syria came the news about the use in the battle against militants fighting robots army of Russia.
Now it is all used to the fact that the combat robots on crawler or wheels are widely used in the Russian army and other countries.
Fighting robots long-boggling the minds of science fiction writers, but their actual implementation is very different from the mechanical giants that we see in science fiction movies. Why in modern world there is no walking war machines described in the books of the BattleTech series or the recently released novel by Oleg Divov “tech Support” is very obvious. Unsteady Walker, maybe “tangled in its own feet”, but the tank in the treads or the car wheels is not confused
Biped robot can be padded in the foot and lose mobility, the tank is the same in principle, even one caterpillar, is able to slowly crawl away from the battle. Walking machine will never be able to carry as much armor, how much hung on the tank, and even if you can, you will need to spread a thin layer all over the body and “limbs”. As a result, even the armored robot you can shoot from a heavy machine gun — not to mention the cannon arms.
And because almost all the arguments above are absolutely true. Modern military thought has gone the other way. Military engineers build tanks as if guided by the old joke about the crocodile Gena “that’s good that you are so flat and green.” And most importantly, not to blame them what technology really needs less be issued above the ground, the armor (ideally) should be concentrated in the front part, which is recommended to meet the enemy, and the geometry of the housing is designed in such a way that even the most “handy” a driver spent the maximum force before he can flip a tank.
And yet, why nature has given most of the animals legs to walk? Feet is easy. From the point of view of nature, it is much easier than the wheel, although the dream of the wheel dogs is still here. Legs provide greater throughput and allow you to develop greater speed on land. Look at the Cheetah, can accelerate to 110 km/h on rough terrain, which can only rare buggy. In addition, on two or four legs to get there, where I had a single tank.
It turns out that the first clear advantage is the maneuverability. Currently, the support of infantry in mountain, rough terrain, or the maximum wetland area is only possible by using helicopters, ATVs (and then not everywhere), and… cavalry. All. If Arsenal add not even a very heavily armored robots, it would completely change the entire picture of the battlefield. Such a robot and will reach there where “Makar calves did not drive” and will bring enough weapons, and will be useful in case you need to evacuate the wounded.
So there is need a lightweight, two-legged, with a great gyro and a well-trained neural network, machine. The neural network, in particular, will help her control the legs — if using the camera as clearly as possible looking for the place where the leg can be put and where not worth it. So we get a perfect robot Ranger for support. Given the nature of the clashes and the weapons used, heavy armor in this case would do more harm than good. In most cases, a walking machine needs to count on a maneuver or a hasty retreat, and not try to “push” the armor of the enemy, entrenched in “zelenke”.
By the way, the robots are represented all over our beloved universe of “Star wars”. It’s not about giants walking the at-at from the fifth episode, but the small light at-ST, so ignominiously nepolokivci kicks on the forest moon of Endor Princess Leia, Chewbacca, and a local lovely on the view of aboriginal people. However, this is the cost of script, requiring the victory of good. In reality, the troopers, supported by such scouts, could become virtually invincible to the rebels.
And, surely, the walkers will be very necessary, when humans will start expansion to other planets. In the case of the rugged Martian terrain, the low gravity and lack of roads, the walkers will be the most versatile and convenient means of transportation. Everywhere not roll the wheel of the Rover, will dosage Martian robot support.
The second problem with robots is that they are high. Here it is necessary to understand the problem if it is. Yes, in high tank easier to get and it can be seen from a distance. And here is an important “but”. A huge plus walking robot in reality that it can be like high and low. We are talking about the chance to sit on his feet.
And whether the tank the opportunity to become taller? Still as needed, the only question is that the tank really does not lift. However, the designers tried at the time to make the crocodile the giraffe. We may recall the English wedge “Mantis” (mantis), is able to lift part of the hull for firing from a higher position. In Germany in the late seventies of the last century there was a program “Panther” installation on tanks “Leopard-1” and BMP “Marder-1” special rocket launcher. Housing rose up the tower, ending at the top of the unit with anti-tank missiles.
And here we have the reverse situation. Fighting walking robot and so has a greater height, which may at any time reduce just sitting down and folding his legs. That he should be able to do it, no doubt, as always to rise to the height even of 6-10 meters and go back down the ladder for the crew to be problematic.
In addition, field conditions may require repairs, and to do it on top, like a circus gymnast, a dubious pleasure. It turns out that under certain combat conditions, the robot Walker is able to realize its potential much better than a squat tank.
Yes, on the one hand we climb into his cab on the ladder, and with another beautiful, almost perfect view and a great chance to tactical manoeuvre. Again, it is impossible not to recall the novel by Oleg Divov, which is very authentically depicts the possible use of such war machines. In the low Bush the opportunity to look top will help much more than any radar. By the way, the radar at the Walker “the Hut” all, too, more than okay.
It is worth noting that almost any structural variant of a manned walking robot will be made much easier than modern tanks. It is very difficult to argue, but I want to say a few words of support in favor of the walkers.
Tank battles, as they were presented in the second half of the last century, when towards each other will carry tens and hundreds of armoured vehicles firing on the move, hardly ever widespread. In today’s local conflicts tanks — a weapon of infantry support, and more often they are used for firing from ambush and specially prepared shelters. In such a situation and the Walker with the opportunity to “sit down”, to minimize visible surface and expose the enemy as armored parts of the body will not lose battle tank.
Among other things, a lower reservation may come in very handy on “weighing”. Modern tanks helicopters will not Tinker too much armor, too heavy. If you make the Walker easier, you’ll be able for additional tactical maneuvers is to transport the Walker from place to place under the fuselage of the helicopter to get the car of support in the right place.
The ability to simultaneously fire the helicopters and enemy vehicles, while moving at high speed and making evasive maneuvers worth it. Most modern anti-tank missiles don’t really like when the target makes cutting jumping several metres and goes out of the affected area in zigzags. So get on this Walker is easy only in theory, and to hit such a moving target from a tank gun — the problem altogether from the category of difficult to implement.
Based on the foregoing, one can imagine realistic ways to use a walking armoured vehicles. Of course, in the near future, waiting for replacement tanks to walkers not worth it, at least for economic reasons — to build tanks cheaper.
But as a separate, albeit expensive and highly specialized combat unit, why not. The ability to fire from a great height, resize if necessary, increased in comparison with all other equipment cross. All of this is important advantages, and in their proper use fighting walking robot will be almost indispensable in the battle machine.