Tags: robot | octopus | ocean | research

Robot Octopus Could Perform Delicate Ocean Research (Video)

By    |   Monday, 29 Sep 2014 07:32 AM

Scientists are hoping a robot octopus like the one introduced last week at a conference in Chicago can one day be used to research the ocean and collect samples at great depths without disturbing the environment.

Attendees at the International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems saw video of how a robot octopus crawled around in the Aegean Sea, grabbed a ball and swam independently around other creatures in the water, reported NBC News. The robot is the creation of Greece computer scientist Dimitris Tsakiri.



Tsakiris's big breakthrough with the technology came with the development of its silicone web, modeled after the Octopus vulgaris, which swims mostly in the Mediterranean Sea. The web allows the robot to reach speeds of seven inches per second, nearly doubling is speed without the web, noted NBC News.

Michelle Starr of CNET.com reported the octopus's eight-limb synchronized swimming motion has been studied by researchers for some time. The Greek research team, headed by Tsakiri, took the next step last year by creating the model and then the web that allowed the robot to move efficiently through the water.

"This robotic swimmer is first investigated computationally via dynamical models capturing the arm and web compliance, and indicating the effect of various kinematic parameters of the system on its motion," Tsakiri and his team of researchers wrote in their abstract for the conference.

"The performance of the robotic prototype is, then, tested experimentally, to demonstrate this novel mode of underwater propulsion by combining various patterns of sculling movements of the arms and web. Speeds of 0.5 body lengths per second and propulsive forces of up to 10.5 N were achieved, with a cost of transport as low as 0.62," according to the abstract.

Researchers said they hope to use the robot octopus to conduct tests in places underwater with as little disturbance to ocean life as possible. Scientists said the robot could observe life as it happens and grab objects and bring them back to scientists, wrote CNET.com.

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Scientists are hoping a robot octopus like the one introduced last week at a conference in Chicago can one day be used to research the ocean and collect samples at great depths without disturbing the environment.
robot, octopus, ocean, research
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2014-32-29
Monday, 29 Sep 2014 07:32 AM
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