Cyborg Mini Dragonflies Are Flying Through The Skies

Jamie Bishop | May 7th, 2019

There is now a live dragonfly, that wears a micro backpack that turns them into a cyborg, a dragonfly with optical implants. Known as the DragonflEye, a cybernetic micro air vehicle being created by at Draper.

These modified dragonflies carry little backpacks filled with mini electronics. And these backpacks interface directly with the dragonfly’s nervous system to control it. To makes things even better these cyborg dragonflies are eco-friendly, being powered by the sun. Carrying around little tiny solar panels that will harvest enough energy to power itself, thus not needing any batteries at all.

And this is not science fiction, Draper already has moving prototypes that work. They have been testing this technology since 2017, which means it is nearly ready to really spring into action. You can imagine the possibilities and advantages that come with an army of stealth cyborg dragonflies.

The really unique part of DragonflEye’s setup is that they do not spoof any insect sensors or try to control their muscles. They actually use optical electrodes to inject different commands directly into their nervous systems. And these dragonflies have been genetically tweaked to accept the commands. The result is a cyborg insect that can fly wherever you want, without losing any of the airborne and flight skills of a real dragonfly. Something many micro air robots lack completely.

Common dragonflies weigh only around 600 milligrams and are known to naturally fly great distances at high speeds. So far any mechanical fliers have been far less efficient or effective at flight. The main problem that if you are creating a micro robot, then your robot will only have a very small power supply for its power source, meaning its flight time will be very low. However these half dragonfly half robots do not have this problem at all.

So far the research at Draper has been moving along at a tremendous rate. The electronics and hardware interface are all completely ready, and the testing phases have begun. It may still be some time before you see cyborg dragonflies zipping around your neighborhood, but at least you know it is actually an upcoming reality.

Next Article
  • The World’s First Cyborg Artist

    Neil Harbisson is the world’s first cyborg that is an artist, thanks to an antenna that has been implanted into his skull. Harbisson is able to paint sounds and hear images due to this antenna. This allows him to make statements such as ringtones are green and that a certain artist may be red or...

    Read More
  • The Micro-particles That Allow You To Live Without Breathing

    Scientists at the Boston Children’s Hospital have made a medical breakthrough that may enable people to stay underwater for over twenty minutes or more. This is the type of medical breakthrough that could reshape the whole world of surfing. Surfers would be much safer knowing that if they run into difficulty they would be able...

    Read More
  • Figs Are Actually Considered An Animal Product

    When it comes to the list of foods that are non-vegan, the list can actually be a lot larger than you may think. Some fruits and vegetables even end up on the non-vegan list. Vegans always have to be on the lookout for products that they may mistakenly think are safe and accidentally end up...

    Read More
  • The Exiled Bell

    Yes, an object can actually be tried and exiled. Which is exactly what happened back in 1584, when Ivan the Terrible died and left his two sons behind Fyodor and Dimitri. Now Fyodor was actually mentally handicapped, and Dimitri was just an infant. This meant that Dimitri became the next czar. ...

    Read More
  • The Japanese Art Of Synchronized Walking

    Yup you read the title correctly, in Japan synchronized walking is a real sport and it's actually pretty nuts. For the same baffling and strange reasons that the Japanese do many things we find bizarre, they have been competing in a competition around synchronized precision team walking since 1966. In...

    Read More
  • A Museum Of Non Visible Art

    In an art project that looks as ridiculous as it sounds, the museum of non-visible art seems to be bringing over people from all over the world. For anyone looking at it from a logical point of view, it looks like an elaborate internet scam. In fact, selling fresh air sounds like the type of...

    Read More
  • The Cornfield Bomber

    Unpiloted aircraft that fly off on their own is actually not a myth, mistakes do happen on the tarmac and sometimes pilots forget to turn off the throttle. In most cases, the unguided planes shoot across an airport until they crash into a line of light planes, a hangar or some parked cars. But on...

    Read More