Meet BigDog: the most advanced quadruped robot on Earth. It can walk, run, jump, and climb on rough terrain while carrying heavy loads. BigDog is powered by a gasoline engine that drives a hydraulic actuation system. Its legs have the ability to absorb shock and recycle energy from one step to the next. BigDog is 1 meter long and stands 0.7 meters tall.
BigDog is being developed by Boston Dynamics. Their intentions are in creating robots that have rough-terrain mobility and can be taken any place where people and animals can go. There is an on-board computer that controls movements by use of numerous sensors. These sensors include joint positions, joint force, ground contact, ground load, a laser gyroscope, and a stereo vision system. The program is funded by the Defense Advanced Research Project Agency (DARPA).
In separate trials BigDog ran 6.44 km/hour, climbed slopes up to 45 degrees, walked across rubble, and carried a 340 lb load. Check the video below to see BigDog in action: