By David Ponce
Getting over walls can be done in a variety of ways. Aside from being bitten by a radioactive spider and turning into Spiderman, these include grappling hooks, trebuchets (might be hard on the landing), and suction cups, to name a few. All have their drawbacks, but the above solution is interesting. “Utah State University “Ascending Aggies” team recently won first prize out of 33 teams in the Air Force’s contest to get four soldiers over a very tall wall.” They developed what they call a PVAC, or Personal Vacuum Assisted Climber and it works just as you’d imagine: a loud-as-hell vacuum strapped to your back connects to two suction cups and lets you climb pretty much anything, even if the surface wouldn’t have been so good for regular suctions cups. It’s loud, and heavy, and it’s still in the development stages, but the work they’ve done so far is impressive enough that the Air Force coughed up $100,000 to let them keep working on it. You sort of do have to watch the above video to get a sense of just why this is cool.