The researchers have carried a study to investigate the amount of influence of robots on the soldiers on mission.
During the study, the researchers found that as robots’ role on the battlefield continues to increase, the soldiers’ attachment to them are also increasing.
University of Washington researcher Julie Carpenter carried the unique study to know what kind of relationships soldiers develop with the machines that so often save their lives and if such attachments ever interfered with mission outcome.
For this, Carpenter interviewed 23 explosive ordnance personnel from every branch of the military. These troops often rely on robots to detect, inspect and disarm explosives.
Carpenter found that troops’ relationships with robots evolved with their technology, and that while soldiers denied emotion ever affected performance, they admitted feeling a range of emotions when their field robot was destroyed, including anger and sadness.
“They would say they were angry when a robot became disabled because it is an important tool, but then they would add ‘poor little guy,’ or they’d say they had a funeral for it,” Carpenter said in a statement.