Bio-inspired Robotics

Manta-Ray Like Underwater Vehicle “Manta-Bot”

While major bio-inspired underwater vehicles have demonstrated a fish-like swimming pattern (similar appearance, caudal fin propulsion, etc), many of them cannot carry a large load and are unable to achieve sharp maneuvers. We developed a manta-ray-inspired underwater vehicle (manta-bot) that can achieve elegant swimming underwater just like a real manta-ray. With a built-in control system (ROS), …

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How dorsal fins make fish faster and more efficient

The dorsal and anal fins of fish interact with the tail fins to produce higher thrust and efficiency. We focused on thin elongated dorsal fins, like those of jackfish. We discovered that dorsal fins can act like the wing strakes of fighter jets, promoting flow attachment on a main lifting surface (wing/tail) by inducing spanwise …

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Tunable stiffness enables fast and efficient swimming in fish-like robots

Underwater vehicles haven’t changed much since the submarines of World War II. They’re rigid, fairly boxy and use propellers to move. And whether they are large manned vessels or small robots, most underwater vehicles have one cruising speed where they are most energy efficient. Fish take a very different approach to moving through water: Their bodies …

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