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Navy Shark Drone: GhostSwimmer Expands Observation Capabilities

By    |   Tuesday, 16 December 2014 08:19 PM

The Navy has introduced an underwater drone, called GhostSwimmer, designed to look and move like a shark.

The reconnaissance robot is about 5 feet long, weighs about 100 pounds, and is designed to recreate the propulsive power of the tuna fish, The Christian Science Monitor reported.

GhostSwimmer is the latest in a series of projects developed by the Navy’s Silent NEMO project.

"GhostSwimmer will allow the Navy to have success during more types of missions while keeping divers and Sailors safe," Michael Rufo, director of Boston Engineering's Advanced Systems Group,
which built the drone, said in a press release. "It swims just like a fish does by oscillating its tail fin back and forth. The unit is a combination of unmanned systems engineering and unique propulsion and control capabilities."

The Silent NEMO program was launched in 2012 to allow junior leaders to develop emerging technologies.

"Our mantra is 'you have permission to be creative.' We want our people to go out there and dream big dreams and put them into action," Capt. Jim Loper said in the press release. "We want to see projects like this replicated throughout the fleet. The fusion of the deckplate brainpower with support of the most senior leadership in the Navy is going to keep us moving forward throughout the 21st century."

The shark drone can operate in water as shallow as 10 inches or as deep as 300 feet. The device can be controlled remotely via a 500-foot tether, or swim independently.

It could be used to inspect the hulls of friendly ships as well as intelligence, surveillance, and reconnaissance missions.

Other animal-based robots introduced by the military include “Cheetah” that can run at nearly 30 mph, the Stickybot that climbs like a gecko, and the cockroach-inspired iSprawl.

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The Navy has introduced an underwater drone, called GhostSwimmer, designed to look and move like a shark.
navy, shark, drone, ghostswimmer
Tuesday, 16 December 2014 08:19 PM
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