Scientists and engineers in Britain are working on swarms of spy flies that can monitor people, military installations and industrial complexes.
From Scotsman.com —
BRITISH military scientists are developing robot flies that can be sent in swarms to spy out enemy positions.
Dr Rafal Zbikowski, the project leader, believes the first machine insects could be buzzing around his lab within ten years. He has already produced a non-airborne prototype that mimics the wing-beats of a hover fly.
Unlike conventional unmanned air vehicles (UAVs), Dr Zbikowski’s tiny drones could operate in confined and cluttered spaces within buildings, stairwells, tunnels or caves.
They would be invaluable for rooting out hidden terrorists, or – with more peaceful roles in mind – helping to locate victims of natural disasters such as earthquakes. Industrial applications might involve inspecting chemical pipes or mines.
The United States military, which is partly funding the research, has even expressed an interest in using the robots to deliver small explosive charges.