A robotic bird developed by the University of Maryland and the Army Research Laboratory may one day become a small spy drone.
The Robo-Raven already has fooled hawks and other birds, and has been attacked by a falcon on three occasions, according to the Army Times.
University scientists built the Robo-Raven out of carbon fiber, Mylar foil wings and foam. They use 3-D printers to make and retool some of its strong, lightweight plastic innards. It weighs less than a pound…
The Robo-Raven mimics a bird with its fan-shaped wings and the hollow rods that comprise the fuselage. In an evolution beyond previous designs, the wings flap independently of one another allowing it to perform complex maneuvers, such as backflips, tight turns and dives.