UPRISE Tactical Exoskeleton Officially Announced by Mawashi Science & Technology

Canadian technology company Mawashi has formally introduced their flagship product: A passive exoskeleton designed to help the soldier carry his heavy load. The exoskeleton is reportedly based on research into how the human body distributes weight, studying obese individuals like the rikishi wrestlers in sumo, to create a solution for the infantryman to carry heavy loads without injury. The company’s name – Mawashi – even comes from the stiff mawashi wrestling belts used in sumo.

The Mawashi UPRISE tactical exoskeleton is (and I swear this isn’t deliberate on my part) the third soldier strength enhancing device to reach the public eye this month. The UPRISE exoskeleton is a passive suit designed to assist the infantryman’s ability to carry heavy loads structurally, rather than through the use of a power assist. This means that while the UPRISE may allow the soldier to carry heavier loads without injury, its tradeoff is a further reduction of the soldier’s power to weight ratio, as the soldier’s muscles remain the only active power available to him – and he must haul the suit as well as his other gear.

Still, for some applications, unpowered exoskeletons hold some promise. Russian sappers are already using passive structural exoskeletons in the field to assist them in carrying their equipment and armor. While I personally do not see unpowered exoskeletons aiding the basic infantry very much, they are still an important step towards the “holy grail” of true powered armor suits. As of yet, the true powered exoskeleton remains out of reach – not because of a major deficiency in the design of the suits themselves, but due to insufficiently dense power sources (such as batteries) that would make the suits worthwhile.



Nathaniel F

Nathaniel is a history enthusiast and firearms hobbyist whose primary interest lies in military small arms technological developments beginning with the smokeless powder era. In addition to contributing to The Firearm Blog, he runs 196,800 Revolutions Per Minute, a blog devoted to modern small arms design and theory. He is also the author of the original web serial Heartblood, which is being updated and edited regularly. He can be reached via email at nathaniel.f@staff.thefirearmblog.com.


Advertisement

  • NINJA del TACO

    I can’t wait for the Exoskeleton Class in 3 Gun Competition to start.

    • PK

      Heavy is 30mm and up.

      • Brett baker

        So much for my 25mm major load.

        • PK

          20mm is the new .22!

  • Ευστάθιος Παλαιολόγος

    I don’t really know much about exosceletons, but big part of carrying heavy loads is actually keaping them if the ground. If a devise does this with no need for effort by the soldier this is a good thing. That means the soldier only puts effort into moving the load and not that much into keeping it at hight over the ground.
    Like pushing a heavy cart. The cart keeps the load (against the gravity) and the person pushes it forward. It always easilyer than actually lifting the load yourself and moving it also.
    Could be very wrong here….

    flanker7

  • CommonSense23

    So in this demo is the guy not wearing a back plate?

    • .45

      “I don’t plan on getting shot in the back.” -That One Guy in Black Hawk Down. (Paraphrased from memory.)

      • Sabrina Gray

        And he got shot in the back…

        • iksnilol

          To be fair, he didn’t plan on getting shot in the back.

    • Preacher

      Sorry to push it that hard – but because I already thought that comment will come: Dude! Look at that picture- He is not wearing any plate carrier at all at the second picture you dumbass! Study the pic and see: The Platecarrier is an addition that you can wear or not. What you see is the exoskeleton itself because it is supposed to CARRY weight so it has something ontop of your shoulders…………. understood the whole idea of that thing?

  • QuadGMoto

    It’s interesting that the pieces following his spine bear a lot of resemblance to actual vertebrae. I wonder if that’s just a stylistic choice or actually functional.

    • Kyle

      Functional, it is supposed to help support carrying a load. Seems like the best was to do that would be to emulate what we naturally have.

      • PK

        Tunas and submarines come to mind. Humankind finds inspiration in nature in many ways.

        Especially in super fun exosuits.

    • Ryan Y

      Looks intentional to keep flexibility/mobility so the wearer can turn their torso.

  • Kamen Rider Blade

    Actually, I can only see Passive Exo Skeletons in the near term / 50 years as being the only “Exo Skeleton” based solution.

    Battery / Generator technology / cost isn’t there.

    Passive Skeleton’s can be made cheap enough, durable enough, that you can potentially buy it for a First World Military.

    • GUNxSPECTRE

      I don’t see cost as being terribly prohibitive. The future of First World militaries will be autonomous. That means the few human operators that actually see frontline combat will number very few in conjunction with autonomous fighting drones, thus we can afford to put more money in individual soldiers.

      There a lot of other solutions to generate power on the go. Things like power generation through movement or solar power. Batteries have made astounding strides in the past decade. What new electric cars are capable of with one charge aren’t insignificant. Now add decades to that technology.

      If anything, these passive exo-skeletons will either be a short-lived technology and/or passed onto civilian/medical usage.

      • throwedoff

        Have you seen the battery packs of a Tesla vehicle? Incredibly huge and their energy density is nothing to brag about. Solar is not really an option for warfighters. Not to many soldiers will want to stand out in the open in bright sunlight to keep their batteries topped off. Modern combat is about cover and concealment. With out night vision technology many operations take place after dark. Systems to generate power through individual movement would only add excessive weight and complexity to be able to meet the power requirements. Until a battery can be developed economically and to an economy of scale that far exceeds the energy densities of the lithium family of batteries, powered soldier exoskeletons are pretty much a pipe dream.

    • Porty1119

      Powered exoskeletons will work just fine in industrial and mining environments, where they can jack into site power with a tether cable. Otherwise, I don’t see if happening anytime soon.

  • Michael Powers

    Its very interesting to me that in over 100 years, battery technology has evolved very little. Sure, there are some better materials than lead and acid, but the basic operation/design of batteries haven’t changed much…..Looking forward to that small backpack nuclear power plant to run my powered exoskeleton.

  • iksnilol

    Wish we could motor swap people… just pop a Hayabusa engine under the hood, twin turbo that sum’of’a’gun and look at your power to weight ratio soar in your favor.

    • noob

      and a self-sealing gas tank. with nitrogen purge.

    • Some Guy

      Imagine the sound of a company Hayabusa engined soldiers charging at the enemy. The noise would be glorious.

      • iksnilol

        It would drown out the sound of crayons crunching (if marines) or the sound of complaints due to lack of air condition (if air force).

  • feetpiece _

    A lot of time and money for something robots should be doing.

    • GUNxSPECTRE

      This.

      A decade or two down the line, most of the troops will be autonomous drones.

      • Porty1119

        Not even close.

        • GUNxSPECTRE

          Yeah, good reply. Good effort. Shit-star for you.

          • Porty1119

            You’re the one making wild assertions and failing to back them up. A machine cannot do the job of an infantryman, not in a built-up area with collateral damage concerns.

      • iksnilol

        And when we get a Skynet, then who will fight it? Humans of course.

        • GUNxSPECTRE

          What do you do when you get a virus on your computer? Take a bat to it like a caveman? No, you use a anti-virus program to take it out.

          • iksnilol

            Doesn’t help, anything you throw at the skynet it’ll just hijack and use against you. It’s the damn Faro plague all over again.

          • GUNxSPECTRE

            Sure, because we’re going to develop just ONE AI that MIGHT turn hostile. And not do the smart thing and make multiple AI that keep each other in check.

            Let’s be honest here, the Terminator franchise is action schlock to show off Schwarzenegger’s muscles, not actual science fiction. Trying to base schlock into real world concepts is like thinking what our society would be like if we had Elves, Orcs, and Dwarves on Earth. A fun topic, but nothing to spend too much time on.

          • iksnilol

            Well, both Google and Facebook had issues with AIs turning hostile and whatnot.

            Like, why would one AI go hostile whilst the other is a good boy and doesn’t? Why wouldn’t they team up ?

          • Garrett

            The Faro Plague is the new Sky Net. Thankfully I’m not the only HZD fan.

          • iksnilol

            That game is awesome. Completed recently the main story in New Game+ Ultra Hard.

            That was fun, now I want to complete it 100% on Ultra Hard.

    • noob

      We do have robots that do ground combat. They are called “land mines”. Some land mines move around, and make self healing minefields. others wheel up behind criminals and explode.

  • Yank in Texas

    I just want 40k space marine style power

    • William Elliott

      yah, but the things they’d have to do to you for you to be able to use it…

    • USMC03Vet

      You gotta grow 3 sets of lungs, 2 hearts, and a black carpace first, neophyte….

  • Jim_Macklin

    A fuel cell would provide power and pure water. It could be recharged using LOX and liquid hydrogen. The soldier could also breath the oxygen, particularly at altitude above 5,000 feet.

  • Hoplopfheil

    The future is here, and it is STALKER.

  • 22winmag

    Firearms not DARPA-shite.

  • noob

    Meanwhile the enemy wears pajamas and carries DShKs over mountains due to their advanced “endoskeleton” technology.

  • Alex A.

    That’s actually a cool concept.
    I gotta bad back from humping heavy packs over big mountains and falling through a floor. I’ll bet it has other uses as well say for wild land firefighters and construction workers?
    All I know is that it needs less multicam and more tactical codpiece.

  • Paelorian

    You ever try to hold a conversation with a UAV, bomb-disposal robot, or self-driving vehicle? Soldiers do much more than swoop in and kill people. How are you going to hold territory and win the psychological war without a human presence?

  • throwedoff

    Okay, but what attaches to it, and how does it attach?