Bio-inspired micro robots swimming in channels
Temel, Fatma Zeynep and Erin, Önder and Tabak, Ahmet Fatih and Yeşilyurt, Serhat (2012) Bio-inspired micro robots swimming in channels. In: 13th Mechatronics Forum International Conference, Linz, Austria
Swimming micro robots that mimic micro organisms have a huge potential in biomedical applications such as opening clogged hard-to-reach arteries, targeted drug delivery and diagnostic operations. Typically, a micro swimmer that consists of a magnetic bead as its body, which is attached to a rigid helical tail, is actuated by a rotating external magnetic field and moved forward in the direction of the rotation in fluids. Understanding of hydrodynamic effects has utmost importance for modeling and prediction of the trajectory of the robot. In this work, a computational fluid dynamics (CFD) model is presented for the mm-long swimmer with the helical tail; the swimmer is used in our previous experiments on the effect of the confinement of the robot in a liquid filled channel. Forward velocity, fluid forces and torques on the micro swimmer are studied with respect to robot’s radial position in the channel and the number of waves on the helical tail. Forward velocities from the CFD model for the robots swimming near the wall agree reasonably well with experimental measurements.
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