May 7, 2012

Best Asteroid Killer: Nukes or Robots?

Rob Waugh, Daily Mail

AP Photo

'Asteroid defence' has always focused on huge weaponry such as nuclear warheads or lasers - but Strathclyde researchers believe throwing a handful of rocks could do the trick instead. Two engineers at the University of Strathclyde think that instead of the huge, cumbersome laser weapons proposed by earlier projects, a 'swarm' of tiny spacecraft weighing 1,000lbs would deflect it. Speaking at a conference in Atlanta Georgia, Alison Gibbings and Massimiliano Vasile, the two engineers propose a 'swarm' of solar-powered pebbles could deflect an asteroid by 22,000 miles - enough to miss Earth entirely.

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TAGGED: robots


May 12, 2012
Do Humans Dream of Android Prostitutes?
Sebastian Anthony, ET
In the next five years or so it will be possible to build lifelike robots. These robots will look, move, and feel like fellow humans — but, unless the technological singularity comes early, these robots won’t be excellent... more ››
In this week's edition of DT Debates, staff writers Andrew Couts and Amir Iliaifar discuss the merits and complications of imposing human morals on robots. The rise of A.I. is in our midst. Google Glasses, self-driving cars,... more ››
May 11, 2012
21st Century Worries: Robot & Avatar Crime
Laurence Peter, BBC News
First it was the telephone, then web cameras and Skype, now remote "presence" is about to take another big step forward - raising some urgent legal and ethical questions. "Beam me up Scotty" - that simple phrase reminds us of... more ››
May 9, 2012
America Building a Robot Army
Rob Waugh, Daily Mail
Armies of robots including dog-like creatures walking on four legs and huge lumbering trucks are the stuff of science fiction - specifically, bleak films such as The Terminator series. But the U.S. military not only wants more... more ››