US Navy: Dolphins are the past, Robots are the future

Discussion in 'User Submitted News' started by Gahars, Nov 10, 2012.

  1. Gahars
    OP

    Gahars Bakayaro Banzai

    Member
    10,254
    17,403
    Aug 5, 2011
    United States
    New Jersey
    [​IMG]

    The United States' Navy has announced plans to phase out its mine-clearing dolphin program, which will be replaced by the use of undersea robots.

    Oh, and if you weren't aware, the United States' Navy has a mine-clearing dolphin program (it's about 50 years old, in fact). What, did you think it was all fun and games with Flipper and his ilk?

    [​IMG] BBC

    As it turns out, dolphins are good for more than just tricks at SeaWorld and scaring Tyra Banks. They've got keen sense, which makes them able to sniff out underwater mines. The only problem is that caring for and training the dolphins takes up a lot of money.

    And so, enter the robots. While some dolphins may continue to be used past 2017 for specialized missions, these mechanized replacements (called the "Kingfish", har har har) should prove to be an easier, more cost effective alternative.

    I can appreciate mine-fighting dolphins as much as the next guy, but the US Navy does have a point. With this new technology cheap and available, well, what's the porpoise?
     
    Satangel and Phoenix Goddess like this.
  2. Qtis

    Qtis Grey Knight Inquisitor

    Member
    3,797
    1,295
    Feb 28, 2010
    The Forge
    Are the robots related to Minecraft that everyone talks about nowadays? :creep:

    On a serious note, I'm surprised this hasn't been done before with all the underwater tech available for for example old ship hunters.
     
  3. shakirmoledina

    shakirmoledina Legend

    Member
    6,611
    218
    Oct 23, 2004
    Tanzania
    Dar es Salaam
    Animal Protection Agency liked this!
     
  4. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

    Member
    21,192
    10,074
    Apr 29, 2011
    United States
    Dr. Wahwee's castle
    Dolphins > robots, but it's good they won't get killed.
     
  5. Satangel

    Satangel BEAST

    Member
    10,255
    556
    Nov 27, 2006
    Belgium
    Bruges, Belgium
    Didn't even know this existed. Sure I knew they were smart, but this smart/trainable?
     
  6. AlanJohn

    AlanJohn くたばれ

    Member
    3,456
    2,928
    Jan 6, 2011
    Canada,New Jersey
    Yep. Dolphins are basically underwater dogs.
     
  7. the_randomizer

    the_randomizer The Temp's official fox whisperer

    Member
    21,192
    10,074
    Apr 29, 2011
    United States
    Dr. Wahwee's castle
    They have bigger brains than humans, too.
     
  8. Gahars
    OP

    Gahars Bakayaro Banzai

    Member
    10,254
    17,403
    Aug 5, 2011
    United States
    New Jersey
    It's worth remembering that the Navy does go out of their way to keep the dolphins safe; the dolphins only locate the mines, not take them out kamikaze style.

    Partially because hey, no one wants the animals to get hurt, and partially because the dolphins are so damn expensive, you couldn't afford to lose any.