Powered exoskeletons have long been a staple of future warfare visions, seen in everything from movies like Aliens and Edge of Tomorrow to the latest Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare video game. Their real world equivalents have been under development in a number of US programs, ranging from Raytheon/SARCOS XOS to DARPA's current Warrior Web program. Now, China's military researchers have debuted their own state of the art exoskeleton at Zhuhai 2014.
Powered exoskeletons are designed to allow individual soldiers to carry much more weight; some exoskeletons allow an individual to carry a hundred pounds while exerting only the physical effort needed to carry twenty pounds. As they become more advanced they may provide the equivalent of powered armor suits for infantry, permitting the average rifleman to carry heavy body armor, batteries, spare supplies and ammo, personal robots, heavy weapons like anti-tank missiles, and advanced sensors and communications.