Unified Weapons Master, a start-up company based in Australia wants to bring Gladiators back (minus the killing bit at the end) and has spent the past couple of years creating a revolutionary, new combat sport that blends cutting-edge technology with traditional martial arts to allow real, weapons-based combat.
To enable these modern gladiatorial scraps, the company has created the Lorica, a suit of armour made from carbon fibre, polycarbonate materials and elastomeric foam. These materials combine to create a suit that can stand up to a real beating, allowing the wearer to absorb the impact of a weapon and escape unscathed.
Underneath the armour is a range of vibration sensors and accelerometers that detect where the fighter lands a hit on the opponent and measures the severity of the blow. The team also plans to include technology to monitor biometric data including heart-rates, oxygen saturation levels and body temperature, giving useful insights into the health of the combatants. This data will then be fed back from the suit to a special ringside computer that monitors the fighters and keeps score.
The company is going to start holding small-scale events in 2015 around Australia and will move to larger events from there. The suits will be made available to purchase but the company have not given any release dates or prices yet.