Big Dog (LS3) goes on a USMC training exercise

They grow up so fast, don't they? It seems like only yesterday that Boston Dynamics' AlphaDog (aka LS3) robot was finding its legs, and yet it has already gone out on training exercises with the US Marine Corps for the first time. The cargo-hauling machine dutifully trotted behind a Marine squad traversing a simulated combat zone in Hawaii, proving that it could both navigate rough terrain and resupply other platoons that would otherwise have to wait for an ATV.

As you can see in the clip below, this mechanized pup is still going through some growing pains. There are occasionally places LS3 can't go, and it's still pretty noisy. It won't be jogging around the front line any time soon. However, the semi-realistic test run will help Boston Dynamics refine the 'bot and get it truly battle-ready. And besides, it's clear that the Marines are already warming up to their new companion -- they've affectionately nicknamed it "Cujo."

[Image credit: Sgt. Sarah Dietz, US Marine Corps]