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Bio Designed for Future Success

The design of the new soft robot (left) was inspired by the deep-sea snailfish (illustrated, right), The snailfish has evolved to live in the very high-pressure oceanic environments. Learn more about the project at Science News. Photo credit: NATURE 2021.

At DECA we tend to compare the wire harnesses and cable assemblies that we build to elements of human body, such as the nervous system. That is probably why the article about a soft, autonomous robot caught our eye. We believe that bio-inspired designs, like this one, are an important part of electronics’ evolution and research.

Modeled on the anatomy of the deep sea snailfish, researchers have been creating a new, tiny, soft robot to explore the ocean’s deep. Typical deep-sea submersibles used in research have solid, heavily reinforced frames so that their instruments are protected from under-water pressure. The pressure at the bottom of the ocean features like the Mariana Trench can reach 15,000 lbs per square inch. This new, aquatic robot has an exterior that is not completely fused and the electronics are encased in silicon both features allow them to adjust to the pressures under water.

Still under testing, scientists hope to create a robot that can not only descend to the oceans depths but also test things like water chemistry, collect samples, and even light up and film their surroundings. The design is a twist on ruggedization and directly inspired by nature. Building research tools that can handle the extreme pressures of the ocean’s depth is challenging. Just like exploring space, components must be ruggedized, weight minimized, and fail-proof. Creating new bio-inspired designs may provide new solutions allowing us to literally go where no man has gone before.

Where do you want to go with your next project? Contact DECA Manufacturing today.

Learn more, the inspiration for this article came from Science News.

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