There were many, many disappointments in Paul Verhoeven’s 1997 movie Starship Troopers. Those of us who love Robert A Heinlein’s novel object to the political re-orientation in the movie, the idiotic ‘science’ and the unbelievable contrivances used to have the characters stumble across each other at various points. One less objectionable, but still disappointing, omission from the movie was Heinlein’s ‘Powered Armour’. He clearly had a love affair with the concept. It was the device that made his Mobile Infantry mobile.
In recent years the US Defence Department’s DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) has been funding development of something very similar. Now, it seems, a working prototype of the leg enhancement and load-carrying part has been developed by the Berkeley Robotics Laboratory.
From the always-exciting FuturePundit article on the subject:
In the UC Berkeley experiments, the human pilot moved about a room wearing the 100-pound exoskeleton and a 70-pound backpack while feeling as if he were lugging a mere 5 pounds.
And this is only the first version.