Conference Paper

Octopus-inspired Eight-arm Robotic Swimming by Sculling Movements

DOI: 10.1109/ICRA.2013.6631314 Conference: IEEE Int. Conf. Rob. Autom. (ICRA'13), Volume: pp. 5135-5141

ABSTRACT Inspired by the octopus arm morphology and exploiting recordings of swimming octopus, we investigate the propulsive capabilities of an 8-arm robotic system under various swimming gaits, including arm sculling and arm undulations, for the generation of forward propulsion. A dynamical model of the robotic system, that considers fluid drag contributions accurately evaluated by CFD methods, was used to study the effects of various kinematic parameters on propulsion. Exper- iments inside a water tank with an 8-arm robotic prototype successfully demonstrated the sculling-only gaits, attaining a maximum speed of approximately 0.2 body lengths per second. Similar trends were observed, as in the simulation studies, with respect to the effect of the kinematic parameters on propulsion.

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    ABSTRACT: Inspired by the agile underwater maneuvering of the octopus, an eight-arm robotic swimmer was developed. Associated dynamical models are used here to design turning maneuvers, an important ability for underwater navigation. The performance of several turning gaits, based on sculling arm movements, of this robotic system was investigated in simulation, with respect to their various kinematic parameters. Experiments with a prototype robotic swimmer confirmed the computational results and verified the multi-arm maneuverability of such systems.
    21st Mediterranean Conference on Control and Automation (MED'13); 06/2013