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New robot to test protective army suits in Wiltshire

robot
The “Porton Man” uses state of the art technology to test suits for the Armed Forces Credit: Defence Science and Technology Laboratory

The Ministry of Defence has invested £1.1m ina new state-of-the-art robotic mannequin that will test protective suits andequipment for the UK’s Armed Forces.

The “Porton Man”, named after the Defence Science and Technology Laboratory, based in Porton Down in Wiltshire, is able to walk, march, run, sit, kneel and can even lift its arms to sight a weapon like an infantry soldier.

robot
The “Porton Man” uses state of the art technology to test suits for the Armed Forces Credit: Defence Science and Technology Laboratory

More than a hundred sensors all over the body record data during tests enabling scientists to carry out real-time analysis on equipment such as chemical and biological suits in a realistic but secure environment.

robot
The “Porton Man” uses state of the art technology to test suits for the Armed Forces Credit: Defence Science and Technology Laboratory

Mannequins have been used by Dstl in the past, but this animatronic version, which is designed and built by a British company, is unique to the UK.

robot
The “Porton Man” uses state of the art technology to test suits for the Armed Forces Credit: Defence Science and Technology Laboratory

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2,000 new jobs at Science Park

A new Science Park is to be built at Porton Down creating thousands of jobs. Wiltshire Council has announced it has secured £10 million of government funding for the project.

The park will provide state of the art facilities for research and science companies and create more than 2,000 jobs over a ten year period.

"This is really good news for the whole of Wiltshire as the Porton Science Park will lead the way in the science and technology industry. It will mean more jobs for local people and more investment into this county and its communities."

– Jane Scott, Wiltshire Council Leader

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