MIT researchers have displayed prototype robotic fish that have just ten moving parts, including a single motor. Some prototypes have survived in the lab for four years of constant underwater tests without a leak.
Talk about power management!
The Massachusetts Institute of Technology researchers built prototypes measuring just a few inches long by combining flexible polymers with microprocessor controllers to swim, observe and return to report their findings.
MIT's original 1994 design had over 2,000 components, including six motors.
According to the report, the robotic fish simulate the way real fish swim by using the centrally-located motor to initiate a wave that travels down the body, propelling it forward.
The researchers want to reduce power requirements for on-board batteries to power the fish. Current prototypes consume 2.5 to 5 watts, which is supplied by a tether.
Got any ideas for creating tether-less robotic fish? Send the researchers your ideas.