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Robotic Insect Moves Across Water

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The WaterStrider.

The WaterStrider is able to flap its arms 40 times per second, "paddling" itself across the water's surface at a speed of about 6 mm per second. In a different configuration, the robot's actuator is able to lift 155 times its own weight.

Credit: Bob Hubner/WSU Photo Services

A robot developed by Washington State University researchers mimics insects that are supported by surface tension as they move across water.

The WaterStrider, which weighs 56 milligrams and is 22 millimeters long, features a carbon fiber body and four disc-like feet that allow it to maintain surface tension.

The WaterStrider's two arms are moved by a 7-millimeter-long "shape memory actuator," which flaps them at up to 40 times per second, allowing the robot to move across the surface of the water at around 6 millimeters per second.

From New Atlas
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