Legendary Canadian inventor Troy Hurtubise has decided to offer his services in the War on Terror, spending two years developing the Trojan armoured suit. He reckons it could prove useful in south-west Asian combat.
Hurtubise rose to fame in the 1990s during his 15-year-plus effort to develop a suit which could resist bear attacks. His "Ursus" project reportedly cost him more than $100,000 and incorporated chain mail, titanium, plastic, rubber, galvanised steel and – of course – a lot of gaffer tape. His efforts were rewarded with an Ig Nobel prize for safety engineering and a mention in the 2002 Guinness Book of Records.
The idea for the Ursus apparently came to Hurtubise after he survived an encounter with a grizzly. Later, after seeing Robocop while in college, he conceived the notion of building an invulnerable research suit which would allow closeup interaction with bears in the wild.
The suit was put through a rigorous test programme. It shrugged off bullets, baseball bats, axe blows, arrows, and strikes from 300-lb treetrunk battering rams, often with Hurtubise inside. The Ursus also coped easily with a 50km/h collision with a truck. New Scientist quotes Hurtubise as saying afterwards "I've never had a bruise."
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