Air Mule Hovercraft Ambulance Flies Autonomously

Rescue robocops

Robots may not stop war, but they may someday be able to save the humans fighting it. Developed by Tactical Robotics, the Air Mule is a hovercar-like aircraft, built to be an ambulance. On December 30th, it flew autonomously, giving a wobbly glimpse at what battlefield salvation may look like later this century. Watch it take off:

And bumble forward lazily:

The Air Mule has long been in the works. In 2007, Popular Science wrote about an early version of the concept:

Autonomous flight adds greater ability to this sky-ambulance. Designed to carry almost 1,000 pounds, the Air Mule is designed for a top speed of 60 mph, and unladen a maximum range of 430 miles. Built around ducted fans, it takes off and lands vertically.

Watch it below:

[Via Army Recognition]