• U.S. Air Force training in New Mexico uses robots to teach airmen how to operate better in tense situations.
     U.S. Air Force training in New Mexico uses robots to teach airmen how to operate better in tense situations.

A New Trainer for Airmen: Skynet From 'Terminator'

February 9, 2017


The U.S. Air Force can program robots for intense practice missions.


They can extinguish shipboard fires and deliver explosive devices to kill suspected shooters, and now robots can help U.S. airmen practice for intense missions, such as hostage situations.

The U.S. Air Force’s 27th Special Operations Wing is using specialized robots programmed with practice scenarios to train explosive ordnance disposal technicians at Cannon Air Force Base, New Mexico.

The exercises demonstrate for the airmen “how hard it is when a target is actually moving,” explains 1st Lt. Steven Hunter, USAF, of the 27th Special Operations Civil Engineer Squadron. The training helps airmen hone their skills so their reactions in intense situations become second nature, he says. “You don’t have to worry about [reactions] while you’re worried about doing your job in a new scenario,” Hunter offers. “As many things that can be second nature should be second nature.”

Hunter’s enthusiasm about the training is obvious. “The training is really cool,” he says in a video about it. “They have these big, huge robots—sort of like Skynet from Terminator.

 

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