It started off innocently enough. Personal transporters, they told us, just robots to make life easier. Now look at them -- Toyota's Partner Robots are set for upgrades that include back-mounted solar chargers, spring-loaded jumping mechanisms, and a design hardy enough to withstand lunar temperature drops. Intended for the performance of exploratory missions on the moon -- alongside a four-wheeled robotic rover -- the new designs were introduced by Toyota in a presentation titled "Realization of Moon Exploration Using Advanced Robots by 2020." So, if the world doesn't actually end in 2012, by 2020 we'll have extraterrestrial robots plotting our demise anyway. More pictures of lunar colonization can be found after the break.

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