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New Military Gadget Lets Users Suck Power off of Power Lines



The US Air Force has developed a gadget that will give troops operating in the field access to electricity. Just hook it onto a power line:

An engineer at an Air Force research lab in Dayton, Ohio, has figured out how to harness electricity from power lines via a system called RAPS. RAPS is a connecting device that’s attached to the end of a long cable. When the device is thrown over a power line, a blade at the end pierces the power line and completes the circuit that brings electricity down to the soldier. And that can mean a lot in the desert or jungle.


http://science.dodlive.mil/2010/06/29/the-bat-hook-harvesting-energy-from-power-lines-labtv/ via OhGizmo! | Photo: US Department of Defense

Umm, ya..

1. if you can find a power line, you will probably be standing on a ROAD..
2. Make a Good connection, then have a GIANT transformer to change it from 50K volts. Unless you are standing at someones HOUSE, this could be SHOCKING.
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@Splint --> Two circuits in a single gang box is usually allowed by code. I have several situations where I have 2 switches in a gang box that are supplied by 2 different breakers.
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@ ECA:

In Québec, there are thousands of kilometers of power lines between the power dams and the cities. They are all situated deep in the woods.

It's 735K V, but throw in a couple resistors and you're good to go :)
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The sad part is that some wacko on one of the DIY websites will run out and try to copy it. They'll mail his ashes back to his family in an envelope....
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I don't find this to be anything new or a discovery (innovation or what ever else you may want to call) because in my country a lot of slums use similar hooks to draw power from the overhead transmission lines and this has been happening since almost over 30 years now.
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Must be for low-voltage lines. Power lines don't have insulation, so don't need a knife blade to pierce them. Not to mention a high-voltage line will fry you.
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hah, this was satisfying. I do all the animations for this series, but never watch the episodes all the way through. I saw the picture and thought oh that looks familiar...
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Interesting that most are only concerned with the practical application of this gadget but so few think of the ethical implication. On top of both, how about afterward when the soldier is finished the wire will be left with a damaged insulation. Rather irresponsible mentality.
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@Vonskippy No where in the article does it mention an "invading military". Try some facts next time rather than showing your prejudices.
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