Eel-bot with Artificial Muscles Tested to Study Marine Life
A transparent eel-like robot developed by a team of University of California San Diego for research purpose is in the limelight. Students invention may not seem like a big one when compared to remotely operated underwater vehicles in use today. But certainly, they hope that it will be the preferred way for studying marine life in future. Eel-like robot is about a foot long in length which is 30 centimeters and possesses artificial arms to swim around underwater. It produces electrical charges in the salt water around and inside its artificial muscles for undulation just like a real eel.
‘The charges are located just outside the robot’s surface and carry very little current so they are safe for nearby marine life,’ said UC San Diego.MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory is preparing a fish-like robot. The UC San Diego team’s eel-bot is the softest bot developed till now. Softer robots are less likely to hurt underwater life in contact, like coral reefs or other animals. UC San Diego tested this eel-machine in a saltwater aquarium tank with real marine life such as coral reefs, fish, jellyfish etc. Team is hoping to develop head part of this bot in order to collect useful data. Best about this robot is, it gets blended with the underwater life and keeps stealthy silence. Next development steps of this robot include design reliability and system of weighs for deeper dives.