Experiments on in-channel swimming of an untethered biomimetic robot with different helical tails
Tabak, Ahmet Fatih and Yeşilyurt, Serhat (2012) Experiments on in-channel swimming of an untethered biomimetic robot with different helical tails. In: 4th IEEE RAS & EMBS International Conference on Biomedical Robotics & Biomechatronics (BioRob 2012), Roma, Italy
Experiments are carried out with a cm-scale bio-mimetic swimming robot, which consists of a body and a rigid helical tail and mimics typical eukaryotic micro organisms, inside circular channels filled with viscous fluids. The body of the robot is made of a cylindrical capsule, which includes an onboard power supply, a dedicated DC-motor, and a driving circuitry with IR-receiver for remote control purposes. In experiments geometric parameters of the helical tail, wavelength and amplitude, and the diameter of the circular channels are varied to understand the effect of those parameters on the swimming speed of the robots. Models, based on slender body theory (SBT) and resistive force theory (RFT), are implemented to predict the swimming speeds, which are then compared with experimentally measured values. A simple model for the DC-motor dynamics is included to account for the contact friction effects on the body rotation rates. Model results agree reasonably well with experimental measurements.
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