The robotic dog at the exhibition of Russian weapons was reported by the state media RIA Novosti, which "asked about the robotic complex of developers." At the presentation, the robot dog carried a load in the form of a disposable rocket-propelled anti-tank grenade with an RPG-26 grenade launcher.
According to them, the robot dog, or rather the M-81 complex, can "conduct aimed fire, transport weapons, for civilian purposes it can be used in the emergency zone for reconnaissance, passage through the rubble and delivery of medicines." When used in combat, the robotic dog can still be engaged in target designation, patrolling and security, the developers said.
This complex looks like a dog due to the fact that it is made "with the use of bionics - the principles, structures and mechanics characteristic of the animal world, therefore they resemble dogs, especially in dynamics."
According to the agency, the development belongs to the Russian engineering company JSC "Intellect Machine". The company, according to the Unified State Register of Legal Entities, was registered in April 2022, its legal address is located in an ordinary residential building on Shevchenko Street in St. Petersburg. The company is managed by Aleksey Aristov, who previously acted as a director and head of firms that the tax service liquidated, recognizing as inactive.
Despite the fact that the robot was dressed in a black suit at the presentation, thanks to its appearance in the “M-81 complex”, it is easy to recognize the Go1 robot model from the Chinese company Unitree Robotics: it has a characteristic octagonal head shape and a view of the front cameras that could be seen through the case. Such a robot on the manufacturer's website is presented in two trim levels and costs $2700-3500. This model has been on the market for more than a year, and anyone can buy it, including it is sold on AliExpress.
The manufacturer positions the robot as a companion - that is, in fact, a toy. The specifications indicate that it can carry a load of up to 3 kg and reach speeds of up to 17 km / h and holds a charge for up to 4 hours. However, according to customer reviews, in fact, depending on the operating mode, it usually works from 30 minutes to a couple of hours, and its maximum speed does not exceed 4-5 km / h.
In Russia, Unitree Go1 is sold on the Robosobaka website, which is owned by Revotech LLC. The company indicates on the website and in its social networks that it is associated with Skolkovo. Its parent company, New IT Project LLC, is a major supplier of conventional computers and laptops to the Ministry of Internal Affairs and the Ministry of Emergency Situations of Russia (over the past four years, the amount of contracts concluded is at least 2 billion rubles). On the Robosobaka tiktok, you can find another video where a large number of the same robots were also dressed - however, in the video they were not in a camouflage black case, but in smart pants.
Unitree Go1 not only cannot carry heavy loads - for example, an RPG-26 with a grenade weighs 4.7 kg, which is a bit heavy for a robot, if it really is one (however, without a projectile, it can carry a grenade launcher), - but also run on rough terrain, as well as walking on mud or wet ground. The Russian importer points out that walking with the robot is only possible “in sunny weather,” as it does not have sufficient moisture and dust protection. The Chinese developer showed on his Youtube channel in July 2022 that he is already working on a new B1 model that looks different and can dip in water, jump over obstacles and carry up to 80 kg.
Not enough for Go1 and protection against signal interception. Hackers have discovered that the robot has a vulnerability that allows it to intercept its signal and immobilize the robot with the Flipper Zero universal remote control, developed by Russian amateur engineers.
American bloggers also tried to arm the robot. To do this, they developed mounts and mechanisms that allow you to fire weapons on the back of the robot remotely. At the same time, they discovered that the robot can fall both due to recoil and simply carrying small arms. It was especially difficult for Go1 to cope with the machine gun. Bloggers did not check with a grenade launcher.
This is not the first Chinese development, which in Russia is passed off as domestic. In August, the media wrote about a new development by an engineer from Skolkovo - a single-board computer "Repka", which can replace the foreign counterpart Raspberry Pi. It turned out that the innovation is based on the Chinese single-board Nano Pi K1 Plus, which has been on sale since 2018. And the basis of the domestic Raspberry Pi 3 is the Chinese Allwinner H5 processor. You can buy it on AliExpress.