Draper has been working quite hard on developing a tiny cybernetic micro air vehicle called DragonflEye, that looks exactly how you might it expect it to. It is an incredible mash up of nature and technology, basically equipping dragonflies with little drone backpacks. The backpack integrates with the dragonfly’s nervous system so that pilots can control the insect, and the backpack is equipped with solar panels so that it doesn’t need batteries to function. They’ve finally released footage of the DragonflEye in action, and it’s great!
Because the dragonfly has been genetically modified, it automatically accepts commands sent directly to its nervous system. Other cyborg insects are piloted through controlling their muscular systems, but the DragonflEye works by using optical electrodes that send instructions through the dragonfly’s nervous system, meaning that the insect can fly wherever it is commanded to without compromising the insect’s natural flight habits.
Research into this cyborg insect is progressing quite nicely, so you should expect to see more on DragonflEye soon! While the video doesn’t show how the control system works, you can still see how the DragonflEye is put together, so it is still a very interesting video.