Wednesday, August 22, 2012

How spy devices looking like insects are being used for surveillance and spying

How many of you would believe me if I told you that houseflies, bees and beetles (insects that we ignore and see all around) are being used to spy. Some look so close to the actual insects that it will be difficult for you to spot the difference.

Many of these devices are being developed by countries such as US and Israel.

Here is a snapshot of what has already been done:

A team of researchers at the Johns Hopkins University in conjunction with the US Air Force Office of Scientific Research at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Arlington, Virginia, is helping develop what they are calling a micro aerial vehicle (MAV) that will undertake various espionage tasks. It is said that the new device has the capability to land precisely on human skin, use its super-micron sized needle to take DNA samples and fly off again at speed. All people feel is the pain of a mosquito bite without the burning sensation and the swelling of course. The hard-to-detect surveillance drone can also inject a micro radio frequency identification (RFID) tracking device right under skin, and can be used to inject toxins into enemies during wars.

Cyborg Beetle
Scientists at the University of California have implanted electrodes and a radio receiver on the back of a giant flower beetle. This beetle can be wirelessly controlled via electrical signals delivered via the electrodes command the insect to take off, turn left or right, or hover in midflight. The research is funded by the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA),

A team at Harvard University has successfully built a housefly-like robot with synthetic wings that buzz at 120 beats per second.

Japanese researchers have already developed a radio-controlled hawk-moth. The device has four-inch wingspans that resemble hawk moths.

Prof. Robert C. Michelson and his design team from the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI), University of Cambridge (England) and ETS Labs are developing an ‘Entomopter’, a multimode (flying/crawling) insect-like robot. What is unique about the Entomopter is the fact that it is propelled by a pair of flapping wings driven by a Reciprocating Chemical Muscle (RCM) which is capable of generating autonomic wing beating from a chemical energy source without an ignition source, combustion, or atmospheric oxygen.

The Israel Aerospace Industries (IAI) has created a butterfly shaped drone that can hover in mid-flight, just as a helicopter and take pictures with its 0.15 gram camera and memory card