May 09, 2010

That Seventies Transhumanist Icon Steve Austin the Bionic Man

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Why am I going to revisit the Six Million dollar man ? The Seven Horizons Project has a Youtube video of the six Million dollar man intro on its prewiki page. The Seven Horizons project involves over 20 PHds and some doctors and seems to have some government and military funding.

The Seven Horizons effort is produced by CETMONS (the Consortium for Emerging Technologies, Military Operations and National Security), in association with Arizona State University's Sandra Day O'Connor College of Law, the Lincoln Center for Applied Ethics, and the Prevail Project: Wise Governance for Challenging Futures.

I will look at simpler ways to achieve functional equivalence without cybernetic limbs.

More important than the military aspect is that a combination of electric bikes and electric exoskeletons would increase mobility for public transportation. You could wear the exoskeleton and carry your folding electric bike and walk onto high speed trains or buses, but there would be no need for a lot of public transportation off of the busiest corridors. The electric bikes would allow speeds of up to 63 mph for 50 miles. There could be a recharging system for the exoskeleton and bikes on the trains and buses. A well designed system could eliminate congestion and accelerate a no-compromise electric transportation system. People of all ages and physical condition could carry more gear and load even within buildings where cars cannot go now.

The Bionic Parts and Functional Capabilities

The bionic parts:
* Bionic Eye : 20.2:1 zoom lens along with a night vision function in the left eye (as well as the restoration of normal vision). The figure of 20.2:1 is taken from the faux computer graphics in the opening credits; the only figure actually mentioned in the series, by Austin himself, is 20:1, in the episode "Population: Zero." Austin's bionic eye also has other features, such as an infrared feature used frequently to see in the dark, and he has also demonstrated the ability to detect heat (as in the episode "The Pioneers") and view humanoid beings moving too fast for a normal eye to see (as in the "Secret of Bigfoot" story arc). One early episode shows the eye as a deadly accurate targeting device for his throwing arm.

Steve austin entry of the bionic wiki
* Steve's legs allow him to run over 60 mph (the highest speed ever shown in the series on a speed gauge is 66 and 70 mph; the later revival films suggested that he could run faster at a speed of 120 miles per hour,) swim at 40 mph and jump over 40 feet high. Steve's legs are also very strong and can kick any door down; he can even lift/push a car with his legs, when he kicks an object it usually is seen flying away. His legs give him amazing agility, allowing him to leap well over 30 feet horizontally. His legs are also extremely durable. Steves arms and legs give him amazing acrobatic abilities.

* Steve's bionic right arm has the equivalent strength of a bulldozer, lifting well above 1,000 pounds.
Alternative Approaches A combination of an exoskeleton for carrying gear and a folding electric bike for speed. The X02 folding scooter weighs 50 kg (110 lbs) and their is a model with a top speed of 105 km/h (63 mph).

The XO2 125 Urban scooter is similar to the MIT Roboscooter which is shown below. The Roboscooter has a top speed of about 30-35mph.

The new HULC exoskeleton helps you carry 200 lbs for days. the combination of: * HULC or XOS exoskeleton to easily carry 200 lbs
* Jumping stilt boots to allow running at 20 mph (requires some training and conditioning). DARPA investigated powered springwalkers for speeds up to 31 mph
* Jumping stilts allow clearance of 6 foot barriers
* Electric scooter for 63 mph and possibly faster speeds.

Sometimes you walk around over stairs and terrain in the exoskeleton with the scooter folded and stowed as gear. Then you can switch to riding with your electric scooter and your 50 lb exoskeleton stowed. Electric bike and the electric exoskeleton can share or run off the same batteries and/or ultracapacitors or small engine.

You could * go 25 mph in your exoskeleton (with bionic boot attachment)

* could switch at any time to a 63 mph electric bike that you were carrying along with crash safety armor

There are many electric motorcycle options and some are designed for offroad or dirtbiking.

Powerquick ascender is a powered climbing device to enable rapidly scaling walls.

Powerquick website
PQ 500 - 600-pound capacity, Can be used with a variety of lifting chairs and platforms, 600 to 800 feet of climb per charge depending on load.

PQ 300-TC - using the on-board battery we rated the unit at 300 pounds to allow longer climb times and increased speed. As with the PQ 500, it is certified to hold on rope in excess of 2500 pounds, so it can descend with a much greater load than the 300 pounds.

Using a better power supply and stronger engines something like the Powerclimber could be developed with more lifting capacity and even faster climbing speeds.

The bionic eye functionality of zoom lens, infrared imaging and night vision is trivial now adays.

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