BAE SYSTEMS
Robots & Machines

Scientists Look Into “Growing” Drones Using “Chemputer”

Future military aircraft could one day be made using chemistry.

June JavelosaJuly 6th 2016

Chemical Computers

The world it seems, is inching closer to a future that closely resembles scenes from The Terminator. Amid talks of Skynet becoming a reality, we now have scientists tinkering with the possibility of chemical compounds being used to ‘grow’ drones.

The video concept was presented by BAE Systems, who describe “a radical new machine called a Chemputer that could enable advanced chemical processes to grow aircraft and some of their complex electronic systems, conceivably from a molecular level upwards.”

In the video, which you can watch below, you will see a drone being produced in a massive vat of chemicals before it is moved to a staging area where the drones engine and other components are added.

From the Bottom Up

“This is a very exciting time in the development of chemistry. We have been developing routes to digitize synthetic and materials chemistry and at some point in the future hope to assemble complex objects in a machine from the bottom up, or with minimal human assistance. Creating small aircraft would be very challenging but I’m confident that creative thinking and convergent digital technologies will eventually lead to the digital programming of complex chemical and material systems,” says Regius Professor Lee Cronin at the University of Glasgow, and Founding Scientific Director at Cronin Group PLC – who is developing the Chemputer.

This new technology could allow the military to quickly develop UAVs specifically designed to meet whatever threat they are facing. It’s still currently a concept at this point, but BAE Systems is known for bringing their ideas to life. So it’s not all that unlikely that we could one day see future military aircraft being grown using chemistry.

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