Compared to something like the TALOS (Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit), a computerized exoskeleton that essentially wants to turn mere mortals into Iron Man, the FORTIS is fairly simple.
“I would call it elegant,” says Miller. The anodized aluminum and carbon fiber skeleton weighs 30 pounds, and follows along the outside of a human’s body. It has joints in the parts of the body that would regularly have joints (ankle, knee, hip) and flexes from side to side at the waist. Miller says the skeleton was designed for complex environments—whoever is wearing it can climb stairs or a ladder, squat and generally move business as usual in the exoskeleton.
Tools mount to the front of the FORTIS and that weight is directed through the joints in the hip and down to the floor, relieving stress on the entire body, including the feet and ankles.