Z-Man seeks to build synthetic versions of those biological systems, optimize them for efficient human climbing, and use them as novel climbing aids. The overall goal is to enable a soldier to scale a vertical surface while carrying a full combat load using Z-Man technologies.
In 2010, DARPA demonstrated a fully loaded soldier (300 lb) wearing reattachable pads (magnets and microspines) scaling a series of 25-foot walls built from mission-relevant materials using Z-Man technology.
In 2011, DARPA began the transition of Z-Man prototype technologies (magnets and microspines) to the Armed Services.
According to DARPA's 2012 budget, the plans are to integrate nanoparticle enabled space propulsion technology and Z-MAN adhesion technologies for operationally relevant space applications such as orbital debris cleanup, and intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance (ISR).