CIA’s Robot Fish and Insectocopter

Found these rather unique robot videos on the CIA’s YouTube Channel. Check them out!

CIA’s Office of Advanced Technologies and Programs developed the Unmanned Underwater Vehicle (UUV) fish to study aquatic robot technology. Some of the specifications used to develop “Charlie” were: speed, endurance, maneuverability, depth control, navigational accuracy, autonomy, and communications status.

The UUV fish contains a pressure hull, ballast system, and communications system in the body and a propulsion system in the tail. It is controlled by a wireless line-of-sight radio handset.

Developed by CIA’s Office of Research and Development in the 1970s, this micro Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) was the first flight of an insect-sized aerial vehicle (Insectothopter). It was an initiative to explore the concept of intelligence collection by miniaturized platforms.

The Insectothopter had a tiny engine to move the wings up and down. A small amount of gas was used to drive the engine, and the excess was vented out the rear for extra thrust. The flight tests were impressive; however, control in even a slight crosswind proved too difficult to overcome.

(Information from CIA’s YouTube Channel)

8 thoughts on “CIA’s Robot Fish and Insectocopter”

    1. LOL!
      What I was thinking is what if someone just happened to be in the area fishing and snagged it?

      Is there a size limit to robotic fish?
      Are they protected game, would you have to throw it back?
      Who would get to you first, the game warden or the guys in black suits?

      I figure gutting one would be an eye opening experience too. It would make headline news of the National Enquirer for sure:

      “Alien Robot Fish attaking by water!”


    1. Oh man Philo, we are getting hammered right now. We got maybe 6-8 inches of snow last night and it has been snowing like crazy all day. I am afraid to go back out, I don’t want to shovel again!

      Ah, bro, before you know it they will be all grown up and asking for the car keys. Enjoy them while you can! 🙂

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