The World's Smallest Drone Is Like A Tiny Unswattable Bug

The pesky insect of the future

Harvard researchers have developed Robo-fly, the smallest flying robot out there: it's tinier than a quarter and weighs about one-tenth of a paperclip. Using electric muscles, the little guy can beat its wings 120 times per second. When a voltage is applied, Robo-fly's muscles contract, which researchers can use to precisely maneuver it--enough to keep it hovering perfectly in place, or to dodge efforts to swat it.

Originally built to study insect flight, the researchers say Robo-fly might have applications in search and rescue, where it could maneuver through hard-to-reach locations. It still makes a noise that's about as annoying as a real insect, though.