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Lausanne robot plane gets smaller, has 14-inch wingspan

Marc Perton

Last time we took a look at the tiny robot plane being developed by a group of Swiss researchers in Lausanne, the micro-flyer had a wingspan of just 31 inches and weighed about an ounce. But the developers vowed to produce a version with a wingspan half as long, and sure enough, they've gone and done it. The latest edition has a 14-inch wingspan and weighs about a third of an ounce. Like its predecessor, it takes its inspiration from the insect world, and is able to fly indoors autonomously, and includes tiny wing-mounted cameras and a gyroscopic stabilizer. Now, the developers have set the bar higher for the next version: they're shooting for a housefly-sized flyer. Let us know when it's ready. In the meantime, we are so ready to take this one for a spin.

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