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Robotics Science

Fish-like Sensors for Underwater Robots 57

Roland Piquepaille writes "Today, both submarine and surface ships use sonar for navigation. But sonar and other vision systems face various limitations. So why not imitating fish? For millions of years, fish have relied on 'a row of specialized sensory organs along the sides of their bodies, called the lateral line' to avoid predators or to find preys. So engineers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) have decided to build an artificial lateral line for submarines and autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs). The first tests have been successful, and we can now envision a day where AUVs could detect and track moving underwater targets or avoid collisions with moving or stationary objects."
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Fish-like Sensors for Underwater Robots

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  • Er... new? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by gardyloo (512791) on Thursday February 22, 2007 @07:21PM (#18115880)
    As far as I can tell from the article (hah!), the flow-sensors aren't new, though they may be uniquely orientable with applied magnetic fields. Really, this just looks (to me) as though it's a low-frequency linear acoustic array, and those have been used for a LONG time for this sort of thing. It seems to me that the individual sensors might be what are actually of interest.

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