Bommarito Automotive SkyFOX Helicopter – Protesters gather in the southwest corner of Forest Park

Whoosh! Swish! Meet Bat Bot, the new flying batlike drone

WASHINGTON (AP) – Holy drone, Batman! Mechanical masterminds have spawned the Bat Bot, a soaring, sweeping and diving robot that may eventually fly circles around other drones.

Bat Bot’s creators say this 3-ounce prototype could do a better and safer job getting into disaster sites and scoping out construction zones than bulky drones with spinning rotors. It mimics the unique and flexible way bats fly and has a wingspan of a foot-and-a-half.

The bat robot flapsits wings for better aerial maneuvers, glides to save energy and dive bombs when needed. Eventually, the researchers hope to have it perch upside down like the real thing, but that will have to wait for the robot’s sequel.

Bat Bot was announced in a study released Wednesday in the journal Science Robotics.