The laws of physics dictate that aircraft carriers have to be giant targets. Fixed-wing planes, faster and more efficient than their helicopter brethren, need runways to take-off and land, and those runways have to be long enough for the plane to generate lift before it's hurtled (with catapult assistance) out over the sea and into the sky. What if the Navy wants to put a fixed-wing drone on a smaller ship, without the space for a full runway? Enter “SideArm,” a robot arm that fits in a shipping container and can snag a drone right out of the sky.
Somewhere, deep in the bowels of Victoria's Deakin University, a gigantic robot arm is shaking a man to death. Or at least, that's how it might look to the untrained eye: a slim human figure strapped to the end of this great mass of steel and hydraulics. But really, this is a new kind of motion simulator, flexible enough to train fixed-wing pilots, helicopter aces, racing drivers and even kayakers.