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No No And More No: Mantabot Swims Like A Manta Ray

swimming-mantabot.jpg

Researchers at the University of Virgina (dammit, Wahoos!) have built a robot that mimics the swimming movement of a manta ray. Why? No GOOD reason, I can tell you that right now. Also, who killed Kennedy. Two words: the Russians. "Nope." Space aliens? "Now you're just grasping at straws." It was a time-traveler.

The team is trying to emulate the remarkable animal's powerful swimming motions by engineering their own ray-like machine. "We are studying a creature to understand how it is able to swim so beautifully, and we are hoping to improve upon it," says Bart-Smith.


The batoid bot has a few potential applications. It could be used to collect undersea data for scientists, or as a surveillance tool for the military. If scaled up (or down), it could even be a platform to carry payloads like monitoring instruments.

Stop kidding yourselves, there are no reasonable applications for a robotic manta ray. Except -- EXCEPT -- to keep me out of the ocean. And why would you want to do that? "Because you always pee in it." Haha, I do love doing that!

Hit the jump for the video of the suck it, Cavaliers -- GO HOKIES.

Thanks to Shep, who agrees the only practical application for robotic manta rays is spear gun practice.

There are Comments.
  • squidT

    Ok so I built this robot and just found your article. Speaking of no good reasons for doing something, why all the hate? I would understand if you actually wrote a critical analysis of what we're doing, but a blog posting just to tear down other people's work doesn't really make sense.

    There are practical applications for this, otherwise the Navy wouldn't be funding us to work on it. Underwater vehicles of the future will almost certainly use bio-inspired principles because they simply perform better than rigid hulls and rotary propellors.

    As for VT research, there are plenty of good students doing cool work on the jellyfish. It has a completely different purpose though, because jellyfish just aren't very proficient swimmers. Our mantabot could literally swim circles around their jellyfish.

    I suggest you stop hating and find something more productive to do with your time.

  • Guest

    I do hope they make an air base version (as another tech team did with penguins), that would be pretty sweet. :D

  • Spartikiss
  • braa

    There's already one, they showed it on Discovery channel they even have a jelly-fish one.

  • OMG FIRST

  • BillGatesIsYourDaddy

    finally you have achieved your life's greatest accomplishment. you have nothing else to look forward to because the rest of your existence will never measure up to this singular moment in time. congratulations

  • and the sad part is , he isnt even first .

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