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posted by janrinok on Sunday April 27 2014, @05:33AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the I'm-sure-I-parked-it-around-here-somewhere dept.

DARPA is developing a hybrid-powered motorcycle to soundlessly penetrate remote areas and execute complex, lightning-fast raids. The idea is to develop a hybrid power system that relies on both electric and gas power, allowing special ops to go off-road and zip past enemy forces with the silence of an electric engine, while also being able to handle extended missions and higher speeds with a supplemental gas tank. "Quieted, all-wheel-drive capability at extended range in a lightweight, rugged, single-track vehicle could support the successful operations of U.S. expeditionary and special forces in extreme terrain conditions and contested environments," says Wade Pulliam of Logos Technologies which was awarded a contract for a preliminary design to see just how viable the project is. "With a growing need to operate small units far from logistical support, the military may increasingly rely on adaptable, efficient technologies like this hybrid-electric motorcycle."

Logos plans to fit its quieted, multifuel hybrid-electric power system with an all-electric bike from San Francisco-based manufacturer BRD Motorcycles that uses an existing (and what BRD calls "barely legal") racing bike, the RedShift MX, a 250-pound all-electric moto that retails for $15,000. The RedShift MX has a two hour range, but will be extended with a gas tank the size of which will be determined by the military in the research period. The focus on the electric element suggests that DARPA is more concerned with the stealthiness of the motorcycle than it is efficiency. "The team is excited to have such a mature, capable system from which to build, allowing an accelerated development cycle that could not be achieved otherwise," says Pulliam.

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  • (Score: 5, Insightful) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @06:44AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @06:44AM (#36794)

    There's a word for that: aggression.
    There's a common subset of that with its own term: assassination squad.

    One thing it is NOT is "defense".

    -- gewg_

    • (Score: 2, Funny) by dougisfunny on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:03AM

      by dougisfunny (3458) on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:03AM (#36798)

      You know what they say, "The best defense is assassinating the enemies leaders"

      • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:35AM

        by aristarchus (2645) on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:35AM (#36805) Journal

        And if that fails, you can start assassinating, well, anyone who might become a leader, or used to drive a car for a leader, or was living next to a leader, or knew someone who knew someone who was a suspected hostile non-combatant: and we need a silent motorcycle to do this? What the Fairy! The entire point of motorcycles, or of American Motorcycles (and yes, unfortunately there is only one brand, and I believe it is owned by Kitchenmaid Tupperware Brands now) is to be loud, earsplitting loud! So what kind of pansy assassins of Kevin Bacon degrees of separation need silent motorcycles?

        Maybe it is best, when you find yourself in the silent motorcycle corps, to do what many Japanese soldiers who were drafted against their wishes did. Just saying. Illegal motorcycles are against the Geneva Conventions, and remember people (and CIA operatives), there is no statue of limitations on war crimes, and there is universal jurisdiction. Let me repeat: No statue of limitation, and universal jurisdiction. Careful where you travel to, sixty years after having been a motorcycle assassin!

        But this is all research stage, hypothetical! Never will happen! I take it all back. Except the International Law of Armed Conflict part. Semper Fi.

        --
        You are currently banned from moderating. The last day of your ban is 2022-03-25.
        • (Score: 2) by Foobar Bazbot on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:50PM

          by Foobar Bazbot (37) on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:50PM (#36936) Journal

          Q: How do you make a statue of limitations?
          A: Start with a big block of stone, and chip away everything that doesn't look like limitations.

          • (Score: 2) by aristarchus on Sunday April 27 2014, @09:16PM

            by aristarchus (2645) on Sunday April 27 2014, @09:16PM (#36955) Journal

            Thanks, I needed that. Was just about to complain on the poor literacy of Soylentils, mistaking "then" for "than", "loose" for "lose", and sometimes even "statue" for "statute".

            --
            You are currently banned from moderating. The last day of your ban is 2022-03-25.
    • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Sunday April 27 2014, @08:32AM

      by maxwell demon (1608) on Sunday April 27 2014, @08:32AM (#36818) Journal

      I guess also espionage would profit from getting behind the enemy's lines unnoticed.

      --
      The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
      • (Score: 2) by c0lo on Sunday April 27 2014, @02:32PM

        by c0lo (156) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 27 2014, @02:32PM (#36866) Journal

        I guess also espionage would profit from getting behind the enemy's lines unnoticed.

        Just as a matter of a trivia quiz: what was the last war one heard of "lines" being used by "enemy"?
        Was it ... close to when some nations decided to go aggressive [wikipedia.org] without a formal declaration of war [wikipedia.org]?

        --
        https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aoFiw2jMy-0
        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @04:50PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @04:50PM (#36896)

          Just as a matter of a trivia quiz: what was the last war one heard of "lines" being used by "enemy"?

          Ukraine was definitely the most recent time.

          Was it ... close to when some nations decided to go aggressive without a formal declaration of war?

          Wow, 40+ years ago. Did you mean the oldest war I've heard of using lines? The oldest one that comes to my mind is the war between Roma and Carthage. Although I'm sure there are plenty of older ones. That's just the oldest I can think of.

    • (Score: 2) by tathra on Sunday April 27 2014, @04:38PM

      by tathra (3367) on Sunday April 27 2014, @04:38PM (#36893)

      actually very little of what Special Operations Forces do involves aggression. one of their primary missions is providing training (which includes teaching other languages). i know that hollywood has given everybody a certain image of SF and the military in general, but its quite wrong.

      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @06:56PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @06:56PM (#36917)
        Yeah sure, just like a fire brigade doesn't spend most of its time fighting fires but doing other things instead.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:23PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:23PM (#36926)

        very little
        I'm hearing you say "Let's just overlook--or, better still, give our approval to those instances that clearly ARE aggression".

        providing training
        So, they're proving a service like The School of the Americas[1], where the military and paramilitary shock troops of foreign tyrants are taught how to better torture, terrorize, and murder the people of their respective lands in order to more effectively suppress democracy.
        Right. Got ya.

        ...and for those who like to claim that the USA gov't loves democracy, why are all of its best friends dictators?
        Why, when there isn't *already* a dictator, does the USA try to install one?
        In many, many cases, over and over again. [alternet.org] The 4th paragraph contains the long, shameful list.

        .
        Now, let's look at one of those "special" forces operations.

        First, take years and years and years to locate the guy (by which time the organization to which "he belongs" considers him to be nothing more than an inconsequential nutball with a video recorder).

        Next, breach the sovereign borders of an "ally" nation with a USA military force without, y'know, telling your "ally" what you're up to.

        After that, mount an armed assault on a home with minor children in residence. [wikipedia.org]

        Finally, start shooting unarmed people. To death.

        .
        How about another?
        Bust down the door of a private residence--the wrong home--and shoot people to death who are completely unrelated to your mission.
        Just for good measure, cover up your massive screw-up. [google.com]

        .
        How does any of this make Americans more safe?
        In truth, it produces more and more people who want ALL Americans dead.

        [1] ... or whatever euphemism is being applied to the school for butchers these days.

        -- gewg_

        • (Score: 2) by tathra on Sunday April 27 2014, @08:40PM

          by tathra (3367) on Sunday April 27 2014, @08:40PM (#36947)

          I'm hearing you say "Let's just overlook--or, better still, give our approval to those instances that clearly ARE aggression".

          well, at least you openly admit that you're hearing things that i'm not saying and trying to put words in my mouth. forgive the ad hominem, but given that, there's really no point in even reading the rest of your post since its clearly unrelated to mine.

  • (Score: 4, Insightful) by AnonTechie on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:19AM

    by AnonTechie (2275) on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:19AM (#36800) Journal

    Which Congressman/Senator benefits from such a contract? Enough said !!

    --
    Albert Einstein - "Only two things are infinite, the universe and human stupidity, and I'm not sure about the former."
  • (Score: 5, Funny) by Jerry Smith on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:21AM

    by Jerry Smith (379) on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:21AM (#36801) Journal

    How about researching something that DOESN'T have "enemy forces" in its description?

    --
    All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die.
    • (Score: 2) by maxwell demon on Sunday April 27 2014, @08:28AM

      by maxwell demon (1608) on Sunday April 27 2014, @08:28AM (#36816) Journal

      Well, this is DARPA. It's whole reason of existence is about having "enemy forces" in their description.

      --
      The Tao of math: The numbers you can count are not the real numbers.
      • (Score: 4, Interesting) by Jerry Smith on Sunday April 27 2014, @11:29AM

        by Jerry Smith (379) on Sunday April 27 2014, @11:29AM (#36835) Journal

        Well, this is DARPA. It's whole reason of existence is about having "enemy forces" in their description.

        "Enemy forces" being who? Either it will be used on own citizens or sold worldwide to the highest bidders.

        --
        All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain. Time to die.
    • (Score: 2) by tibman on Sunday April 27 2014, @04:00PM

      by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Sunday April 27 2014, @04:00PM (#36890)

      The internet evolved from a DARPA project called ARPANET. I hope this improves your image of government research : )

      --
      SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
      • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:33PM

        by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:33PM (#36928)

        You're pointing to a communications system developed to survive A NUCLEAR WAR.

        What else ya got?

        -- gewg_

        • (Score: 2) by tibman on Monday April 28 2014, @05:36AM

          by tibman (134) Subscriber Badge on Monday April 28 2014, @05:36AM (#37038)

          Since we haven't had a nuclear war i can only guess you're saying the internet was a failure for mankind? lol. Okay okay, how about GPS and Tor? GPS we can ignore because it obviously can be used on guided weapons. But GPSR are very useful to everyday people. Tor's usefulness i leave up to you.

          --
          SN won't survive on lurkers alone. Write comments.
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:52PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @06:52PM (#37338)

            Re: civilian utility: All good points.
            My only possible rebuttal/parry would be to mention the prices associated with "defense" projects; I wonder how much cheaper we could have gotten these if the bucks hadn't been funneled through the military-industrial complex.

            In hindsight, some things e.g. packet switching and onion routing are obvious and one might easily assume that that would have sprung up before very long anyway.

            Now, I'll grant you that GPS satellites are in another league.

            -- gewg_

  • (Score: 3, Interesting) by SlimmPickens on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:27AM

    by SlimmPickens (1056) on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:27AM (#36803)

    I was seriously looking at the nice electric bikes from zero motorcycles but the range killed it, I knew I would go on a lot of long rides. I'm glad I went the 2014 ninja 650L, except for some build issues it's the perfect bike for me.

    These BRD bikes look very nice though. I'm sure I'd be pleased with AWD hybrid electric bike.

    • (Score: 3, Funny) by Bartman12345 on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:47AM

      by Bartman12345 (1317) on Sunday April 27 2014, @07:47AM (#36806)

      I wouldn't mind getting an electric motorcycle, but I think I would miss the noise of the engine... it adds quite a lot to the experience.

      Perhaps I could do what we did as kids, and attach a playing card between the spokes of the wheels with a clothes peg. A cheap way to get some authentic engine noise, and maintain your street cred.

      • (Score: 5, Insightful) by gidds on Sunday April 27 2014, @09:44AM

        by gidds (589) on Sunday April 27 2014, @09:44AM (#36831)

        I would miss the noise of the engine... it adds quite a lot to the experience.

        Yes -- it also adds quite a lot to the 'experience' of anyone who lives near you or your route...

        (Sorry to be That Guy. But a few people round my way seem to think that owning two wheels instead of four somehow obligates them to make as much noise and disturbance as possible. I'm sure that doesn't apply to all bikers, of course, but it doesn't take many to make life miserable.)

        --
        [sig redacted]
        • (Score: 5, Interesting) by Nerdfest on Sunday April 27 2014, @02:35PM

          by Nerdfest (80) on Sunday April 27 2014, @02:35PM (#36867)

          I ride, and I'm "that guy" too. The "Hardly" crowd that seems to think a motorcycle's purpose is to convert fuel to sound are unbearable to ride near, much less live near. Some of the sport bikes really push it at high RPMs as well. You can hear them for miles.

        • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @03:45PM

          by Anonymous Coward on Sunday April 27 2014, @03:45PM (#36886)

          Sing it, brother.

        • (Score: 2) by starcraftsicko on Sunday April 27 2014, @08:42PM

          by starcraftsicko (2821) on Sunday April 27 2014, @08:42PM (#36948) Journal

          Sorry to be That Guy. But a few people round my way seem to think that owning two wheels instead of four somehow obligates them to make as much noise and disturbance as possible.

          But the correct term for those few people 'round your way, and in fact for an alarming percentage of the 'cycle riding persons, is 'fag'. You may feel that it is a neologism [wikipedia.org], but the term is the most appropriate I have found.

          See here [youtube.com].
          and here [youtube.com].
          and finally here [southparkstudios.com].

          I propose that the new silence technology be made mandatory.

          --
          This post was created with recycled electrons.
          • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @04:41PM

            by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @04:41PM (#37268)

            How would you know that? Do bikers fuck your ass too often?

      • (Score: 1) by hoochiecoochieman on Monday April 28 2014, @04:37PM

        by hoochiecoochieman (4158) on Monday April 28 2014, @04:37PM (#37265)

        I wouldn't mind getting an electric motorcycle, but I think I would miss the noise of the engine... it adds quite a lot to the experience.

        Not that much, really. Beyond a certain speed you can't hear shit because of the wind against the helmet.

        If I could find an electrical motorcycle with decent power, range and price, I'd buy it. It doesn't exist yet, but it will, eventually.

  • (Score: 0) by acid andy on Sunday April 27 2014, @09:14AM

    by acid andy (1683) on Sunday April 27 2014, @09:14AM (#36826) Homepage Journal

    all-wheel-drive capability

    I don't think those words mean what he thinks they mean.

    I know Yamaha toyed with sending a small amount of power to the front wheel via hydraulics when losing grip on the rear in their 2WD TT600R [yamaha-motor.eu], but it's debatable how successful that was [ohlins.com].

    --
    Where did that thought come from? And that one? What about this one? Woah, man...
    • (Score: 4, Informative) by SlimmPickens on Sunday April 27 2014, @09:43AM

      by SlimmPickens (1056) on Sunday April 27 2014, @09:43AM (#36830)

      I don't think those words mean what he thinks they mean

      Really? TFA states:

      Quieted, all-wheel-drive capability at extended range in a lightweight, rugged, single-track vehicle

      Which I think is pretty clear. Here's [google.com.au] a legendary example from 1958. You linked to a modiefied R1 from over a decade ago (which frankly sounds like a lot of fun). This bike is specially designed for the special forces in today's world of computer controlled electric motors and cheap sensors. Just like the computer controlled avionics on the stealth bomber, it's going to kick ass.

      • (Score: 2, Insightful) by acid andy on Sunday April 27 2014, @10:07AM

        by acid andy (1683) on Sunday April 27 2014, @10:07AM (#36833) Homepage Journal

        You're right I should have RTF the second link. They go into a little more detail but it would be good to know exactly what 2WD tech they are using. I wonder if it is the Ohlins setup.

        I want one though!

        --
        Where did that thought come from? And that one? What about this one? Woah, man...
        • (Score: 3, Interesting) by SpockLogic on Sunday April 27 2014, @11:40AM

          by SpockLogic (2762) on Sunday April 27 2014, @11:40AM (#36840)

          I'm surprised they don't start with the Christini AWD and add electric power.

          http://www.christini.com/bikes/christini-awd-milit ary [christini.com]

          Interesting deployment of AWD with the front wheel only powering the bike when the rear wheel starts to lose traction.

          --
          Overreacting is one thing, sticking your head up your ass hoping the problem goes away is another - edIII
  • (Score: 0) by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @12:50AM

    by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 28 2014, @12:50AM (#36979)

    I wish the military would sell these 'stealth' or quiet motorcycles to the public. Every time someone revs their motorcycle and bumps their music it reminds me of that Southpark episode where that motorcycle group keeps making more and more noise to get attention and when people ignore them they just make even more noise figuring the problem was that they're not loud enough. It's very annoying.