Very often scientists for their research “spy” something from nature. For example, recently a team of American scientists from Florida Atlantic University together with their colleagues from the office of naval research have developed a robotic jellyfish that are ideal for observing underwater life and various prospecting operations.
According to the edition of Bioinspiration and Biomimetics, for testing the researchers on the 3D printer printed out 5 different options robots. Each of them had different hardness and slightly different design elements. This was done in order to test the effect of underwater environment on the mechanisms and clarify the “cross” — opportunities to penetrate narrow areas and overcome obstacles. As stated by one of the authors of the project Dr. Eric Engberg,
“Flexible robots have a great potential in studying and monitoring underwater environments. To date, the robots, created in the image and likeness of fish, extremely popular, but we decided to use the jellyfish as they are also excellent swimmers.”
As the source of inspiration was made by the larva of the jellyfish Aurelia aurita (eared Aurelia). The robot for maneuvering uses a hydraulic network. Its design includes 2 inflator 8 tentacles. Water pumps are recruited from the surrounding area and filled in soft actuators where there is subsequent release for making the leap. When the pumps are turned off, the silicone from which made the tentacle squeezes the drives to another water discharge. This approach helped to get rid of screws in the design of the robot.
“The robots were able to swim through the holes already their own diameter. In the future we plan to equip robonaut sonar and navigation system. The main area of possible application of the research and monitoring of marine ecosystems this is why robot made of materials that will avoid accidental damage to marine life.”
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