World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article


Article Id: WHEBN0024940642
Reproduction Date:

Title: RoboTuna  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Diversity of fish, Electromechanical engineering, Digital Fish Library, Glossohyal, Operculum papillare
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia


The RoboTuna is a robotic fish project involving a series of robotic fish designed and built by a team of scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) in the US.

The Project

The project started in 1993. Their aim was to investigate the possibility of constructing a robotic submarine that could reproduce the way tunas swim and see if they could find a superior system of propulsion for the Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUVs). Their experiment was a success as they discovered that their fish was both more maneuverable and used less energy than other robotic submarines.The Science Museum in London, UK has one on display in their geophysics and oceanography section.[1][2][3][4][5]


While the early results were successful the RoboTuna was not able to replicate the bursts of acceleration that real tuna were able to manage. Researchers tried a genetic algorithm. Early incarnations worked poorly but as the system evolved the RoboTuna's abilities improved. Visualization techniques showed that the system had evolved so that the RoboTuna was taking advantage of vortices that it created. A swish of its tail one way creating a vortex, which was then used by a swish the other way - propelling it off the vortex it had created. This technique not only helps to with normal swimming but explains the impressive standing start speeds of real tuna.[6]

The Researchers

The team involved in the project included: Michael Triantafyllou, David Barrett who built the first RoboTuna (Charlie I) in 1995 for his PhD thesis, and David Beal and Michael Sachinis, who introduced several modification including a cable-pulley system to produce RoboTuna II.[7]


  1. ^ The Science Museum
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^ MIT engineers create new school of robotic fish August 31, 2009
  5. ^ Douglas Whynott (2000) Something's Fishy about this Robot: When it comes to speed and maneuverability, fish leave man-made submersibles floundering, but RoboTuna and friends may change all that Smithsonian magazine, August
  6. ^, shipwrecks and undersea exploration Robotuna, or How Do Fish Swim So Fast?
  7. ^
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from World eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.