The "electric yak" is a quadrupedal robot under development in China. The device was recently unveiled in Inner Mongolia a few days ago.
The mechanical yak is equipped with sensors to be aware of the surrounding terrain and environment, and it has displayed a very strong adaptative ability to various types of terrains including steps, trenches and cliffs, not to mention muddy roads, grasslands, deserts and snow fields, the report said.
Thanks to 12 sets of joint modules, the robot can move forward and backward, turn, walk diagonally, sprint, dash and jump in a stable manner, the report said.
The quadruped bionic robot can be deployed to deliver supplies including munitions and food in environments like plateaus, mountains, deserts and forests where normal vehicles have difficult time traversing, CCTV said.
Fan's of John Varley may recall the Tagalong robot from his 1976 story In the Bowl:
They're modern science's answer to the backpack. Or maybe to the mule train, though in operation you're sure to be reminded of the safari bearers in old movies, trudging stolidly along behind the White Hunter with bales of supplies on their heads...
If the Electric Yak was a bit bigger, you might be tempted to think of Anthony Boucher's robass, from his 1951 story The Quest for Saint Aquin.
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