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Amazon electric fish inspire underwater robotics

RATE THIS! +31
Posted in Science on 16th Feb, 2014 04:56 AM by AlexMuller

Electric fish from South America are opening up new ideas in robotics. Ghost knifefish, as they are known, put a small current through the water to sense their environment, and undulate a long fin to move around.Scientists at Northwestern University, US, believe both features could be harnessed in a new class of autonomous underwater vehicles.

 
They are developing robots that will be able to swim around debris in total darkness, such as inside a sunken ship.
 
"Today, we don't really have underwater robots that work well in really cluttered conditions or in conditions where vision isn't useful," said Prof Malcolm MacIver.
 
"Just consider the sunken cruise ship. It is very dangerous to send divers into such situations where the water can be very cloudy.
 
"But we can learn from the electric fish. They don't use vision to hunt at night in the rivers of the Amazon basin, and their movement through the cluttered root masses and flooded forests requires incredible precision. They fit a big hole in terms of our capabilities in underwater robots."

Tags: fishrobotsroboticsnatureelectric fish

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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-16
+3
Learning from the designs of nature has been very helpful to many designers and especially in robotics and AI. Looking forward to see what this fish robot can do
5 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-16
+2
Nature designs are indeed a great inspiration. Recently, scientists programmed the robots using rules based on the behavior of termite colonies. Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-16
+1
Yes, researchers have developed a robot that perceives environmental stimuli and learns to react to them. The scientists used the relatively simple nervous system of the honeybee as a model for its working principles. Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-16
+0
It is great to see good results is this area. Attempts to recreate how the brain works are nothing new. Computing principles underlying how the organ operates have inspired computer programmes for a long time and we see now more and more progress Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-16
+1
These knifefish are amazing and a great inspiration. They emit a kind of radar, but it's an electric field; and the sensory receptors scattered over their entire body surface mean they can detect things coming from all directions
2 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-16
+2
Researchers now have good simulations and they hope to put that into technology and get it to work properly. Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-02-16
+0
AI is advancing fast. Just recently there was a report about artificial intelligence software with algorithms that can reliably solve modern Completely Automated Public Turing tests to tell Computers and Humans Apart. Interesting Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2016-05-07
+0
That hits the target dead cetner! Great answer! Reply


 

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