Hyper-realistic robot dragonfly is the drone of the future, now

Credit: Festo

It wouldn't be exactly accurate to call the bio-influenced mechanical aesthetics of the BionicOpter necessarily horrifying, but it would be understandable if your first reaction to the close-up of this tiny piece of machinery is a deep feeling of unease.

Created by German automation company Festo, the BionicOpter was designed to mimic the look and flying dynamics of a dragonfly. The 1.5-foot-long ultra-light flying robot operates via remote control from a smartphone and can maneuver and hover in place just like a real dragonfly. Each of the robot's four wings operate independently using servo motors, allowing each wing to be twisted by up to 90 degrees.

And while the company offers a great amount of detail regarding the robot's development and operation, there's little in the way of explaining the practical applications of the BionicOpter beyond, you know, making you wonder what an automated robo-stinger in the back might feel like.

Don't let the dreamy, hopeful music soundtrack in the video demonstration fool you, this is probably one of the scariest, yet somehow beautiful bits of robotics you've ever seen. You can check out the Bionicopter flying into your futurist nightmares in the video below.

Festo, via Adafruit

For the latest tech stories, follow DVICE on Twitter
at @dvice or find us on Facebook