Tags: Robot Fish | US Navy | enemy ships

Robot Fish May Spy on Enemy Ships for US Navy

By    |   Thursday, 11 Dec 2014 07:02 PM

The U.S. Navy has a new tool that could be in its arsenal next year: a fish.

Engineers at the Office of Naval Research developed a robotic fish modeled after a bluefin tuna. The 5-foot, 100-pound robot is controlled via a joystick, reports The Virginian-Pilot.

The "fish" was demoed for reporters on Thursday as part of Project Silent Nemo, which has military and civilian engineers testing it in the waters at Joint Expeditionary Base Little Creek in Virginia Beach, Va.

The robot, also known as GhostSwimmer, could be put into real-world use as soon as next year, reports the Pilot.

"This is an attempt to take thousands of years of evolution, what has been perfected since the dawn of time, and try to incorporate that into a mechanical device," Jerry Laderman, the 27-year-old Marine captain heading the project, told the Pilot. "The idea is to ... essentially reverse engineer what nature has already done."

The GhostSwimmer glides through the water just like a fish, complete with a tail fin that moves from side to side. Its dorsal fin poked out of the water during the demo for reporters.

"The first time I saw it, I thought it was a living fish," Laderman said. "It looks alive. It's crazy."

In the future, the Navy could drop in a school of GhostSwimmers to monitor enemy ships, patrol harbors, and inspect ships for either mines or damage.

Also on Thursday, it was reported that the Navy has put a high-tech laser  into use aboard a ship in the Persian Gulf. After four months of testing, it was determined the laser, which is capable of shooting down drones and disabling individual weapons on ships, was ready for battle.

"We're not testing it any more. This is operational. It's on a ship in the Persian Gulf," said Rear Admiral Matthew Klunder, head of the Office of Naval Research. "This isn't something we've got in a box we're saving for . . . a special moment. They're using it every single day."

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The U.S. Navy has a new tool that could be in its arsenal next year: a fish. Engineers at the Office of Naval Research developed a robotic fish modeled after a bluefin tuna.
Robot Fish, US Navy, enemy ships
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2014-02-11
Thursday, 11 Dec 2014 07:02 PM
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