Homeland Security Funds Development of Robotic Tuna to Help Protect America

Posted on September 19, 2012

BioSwimmer Tuna Robot


Homeland Security has funded the construction of a robotic tuna to help protect our nation. The DHS Science and Technology Directorate (S&T) is funding the development of the unmanned underwater vehicle (UUV) designed to resemble a tuna. It called the BIOSwimmer. Inspired by the tuna, the BIOSwimmer is designed for high maneuverability in harsh environments.

The BIOSwimmer is being developed by Boston Engineering Corporation's Advanced Systems Group (ASG) in Waltham, Massachusetts. It can inspect the interior voids of ships such as flooded bilges and tanks, and other hard to reach external areas. The DHS tuna bot will also inspect and protect harbors and piers and carry out important security missions.

David Taylor, program manager for the BIOSwimmer for DHS S&T's Borders and Maritime Security Division, said in a statement, "It's all about distilling the science. It's called 'biomimetics.' We're using nature as a basis for design and engineering a system that works exceedingly well. Tuna have had millions of years to develop their ability to move in the water with astounding efficiency. Hopefully we won't take that long."

The robot tuna can be seen in action at the start of this clip. Take a look:



Photo: Composite image by Jane Baker, DHS S&T
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