Design, Modeling and Testing of a Flagellum-inspired Soft Underwater Propeller Exploiting Passive Elasticity

Calisti, Marcello, Giorgio-Serchi, Francesco, Stefanini, Cesare , Farman, Madiha, Hussain, Irfan, Armanini, Costanza, Gan, Dongming, Seneviratne, Lakmal and Renda, Federico (2020) Design, Modeling and Testing of a Flagellum-inspired Soft Underwater Propeller Exploiting Passive Elasticity. In: IEEE/RSJ International Conference on Intelligent Robots and Systems (IROS), 2019.

Full content URL: https://doi.org/10.1109/IROS40897.2019.8967700

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Item Type:Conference or Workshop contribution (Paper)
Item Status:Live Archive

Abstract

Flagellated micro-organism are regarded as excellent swimmers within their size scales. This, along with the simplicity of their actuation and the richness of their dynamics makes them a valuable source of inspiration to design continuum, self-propelled underwater robots. Here we introduce a soft, flagellum-inspired system which exploits the compliance of its own body to passively attain a range of geometrical configurations from the interaction with the surrounding fluid. The spontaneous formation of stable helical waves along the length of the flagellum is responsible for the generation of positive net thrust. We investigate the relationship between actuation frequency and material elasticity in determining the steady-state configuration of the system and its thrust output. This is ultimately used to perform a parameter identification procedure of an elastodynamic model aimed at investigating the scaling laws in the propulsion of flagellated robots.

Subjects:H Engineering > H671 Robotics
Divisions:College of Science > Lincoln Institute for Agri-Food Technology
ID Code:46145
Deposited On:24 Aug 2021 12:01

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