DARPA is working to develop its own Transfomers-style drones

In hard-to-reach warzones, it can be near impossible to get supplies to ground soldiers or conduct rescue missions without coming under enemy fire or landing in minefields. Given these logistical issues, the US Department of Defense in its DARPA division has begun developing unmanned helicopter-like aircraft for supply runs, airborne reconnaissance missions, and casualty evacuations.

It’s official: The U.S. military is getting into the business of building Transformer-style robots. Of course, they won’t exactly be like the ones you’ve seen in Michael Bay‘s films, but in terms of purpose and functionality, the early versions won’t be far off. DARPA, or the U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, revealed on Tuesday concept images of its plan to outfit the U.S. military with modular flying drones, which can “transform” to meet various mission needs. Called ARES (Aerial Reconfigurable Embedded System), the drone will serve as an unmanned flying vehicle capable of setting troops down in hazardous environments, and as a resupply vehicle for military deployments. ARES will also be able to facilitate the evacuation of injured soldiers, a key feature for missions unassisted by combat-ready helicopters.

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