Design of a novel biologically inspired robot fish with low cost

Jian, Xinyu (2022) Design of a novel biologically inspired robot fish with low cost. Masters thesis, Memorial University of Newfoundland.

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Being a novel form of underwater vehicle, the robot fish has the advantages of good maneuverability, quick response, high propulsion efficiency, and low noise. It is widely used in marine biological observation, marine water quality monitoring, submarine pipeline inspection, and exploration. It is one of the hot research topics in the marine field. Compared to the robot fish propulsion mechanism using rigid components, which has problems of no adaptability to underwater motion, and low motion efficiency and inability to imitate the fish body to perform flexible swings, the soft robot fish has higher swimming efficiency, and is the focus of this project. In this work, the design of a novel soft robot fish, with focus on actuation system design, is proposed. The actuation system is based on the motor-driven bevel gear mechanism, which has the advantages of realizing rapid speed regulation, two-way drive, and adjustment range in a small space. One advantage of our design is its straightforward assembly and relatively simple fabrication, which can be completed mainly using 3D printing technology. Three different designs are proposed, based on a comprehensive comparison in terms of efficiency, reliability, and fabrication cost, one design is chosen to be fabricated and tested. The test focuses on the relationship between the swing amplitude, frequency, and swimming speed of the tail. The experiment is mainly divided into two parts: the test of driving the tail of the propulsion mechanism; and the robot fish underwater movement. The test results show that the design achieves the expected motion goal and is engineering feasible, which provides a new solution for the design of the robot fish.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Item ID: 15866
Additional Information: Includes bibliographical references (pages 105-112)
Keywords: robot fish, propulsion mechanism, software, swimming experiment
Department(s): Engineering and Applied Science, Faculty of
Date: August 2022
Date Type: Submission
Digital Object Identifier (DOI):
Library of Congress Subject Heading: Robotic fish--Design and construction; Underwater propulsion; Submersibles--Design and construction

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