Engineering firm AeroVironment is working on a flying robotic spy that will look like a hummingbird. The company has been awarded a 2.1 million dollar contract from the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency's (DARPA) Nano Air Vehicle (NAV) program.
The company got the contract after a successful test flight of its wing propelled aircraft. Check it out here:
The aircraft's wings are pretty small and like a hummingbird's they allow it to hover, fly up and down and sideways. The test vehicle is surely not yet a dead ringer for a hummingbird and AeroVironment says the battery life needs to be improved. But, they claim they are on their way to developing a vehicle that will look like a live bird. The NAV program was specifically designed to create vehicles that work in and out of doors and that mimic nature so that they can be used on reconnaissance missions in urban environments. The possibilities of this device are interesting. Imagine sending in a hummingbird to listen in on the conversations of top world leaders. Of course, there are also frightening sides to such an easily undetectable device especially regarding domestic spying.