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Biomimetics or Biology-inspired Design

Studying Sea Snakes for Underwater Robot Design


A team of engineering, environmental science, and computer science researchers at the University of Adelaide plans to design a marine robot based on the body structure and swimming motion of sea snakes. With an undulating motion, a snake-like robot would be less invasive in the marine environment than a propeller-based machine, and a streamlined shape would enable it to move through complex habitats more easily, says Adelaide researcher Amy Watson. "Biomimetics or biology-inspired design is a rapidly growing field which uses the results of millions of years of trial-and-error experiments through natural evolution to produce a machine that's best-adapted for a particular environment," she says.