Royal Navy tests ‘Iron Man’ jet suits to ‘rapidly swarm and board ships’

A video of a daredevil testing out an "Iron Man-style" jet suit for the Royal Navy and Royal Marines has gone viral on Twitter, with people divided about how useful the tech will be.

In the clip, recorded in the Solent near Portsmouth, a "test pilot" flies from a PAC-24 Fast RIB and onto a P2000 Patrol Boat.

He launches backwards of the boat and quickly spins around, aiming for the bigger ship.

Hovering over the deck, he delicately lands on the deck and immediately laughs and shakes the hand of the man standing next to him as they celebrate the success of the ambitious project.

Launching back into the air again, just seconds later he has landed with immaculate precision back onto the deck of the smaller boat.

Designed by Gravity Industries, the jet suit is also being tested as a tool for paramedics to reach casualties on dangerous terrain like hills and mountains.

The US Naval Institute shared the clip on Twitter with the caption: "The Royal Navy has been testing Jet Suit assault teams to determine if the Iron Man-like suits could be used to rapidly swarm and board ships.

"U.S. Special Operations Command is also evaluating a jetpack that can reach speeds of more than 200 mph."

  • Ex-fighter pilots to fly drones carrying vital coronavirus kit between NHS hospitals

Unsurprisingly, the futuristic video has caused a stir on Twitter and been watched more than 180,000 times since it was uploaded on October 16.

Many commentators were impressed with the tech, but some critics reckoned the users would be vulnerable to enemy fire while in flight.

Sounding excited, a viewer commented: "James Bond being turned into reality…"

One person tweeted: "Are there any other, more cost-effective ways of presenting target practice opportunities to hostile vessels?"

A second wrote: "Seems interesting. Better move fast though, because they all look very vulnerable to small arms fire."

Other viewers pointed out that it will always be dangerous to board an enemy vessel and it could be faster to use a jet suit than to abseil down from a helicopter.

This comes after it was announced that ex-fighter pilots will fly drones between NHS hospitals to transport coronavirus equipment.

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