Get Ready for Summer, Robot Fishing?

Dust off your white linens, as the summer season begins today.  Yes, the traffic on the LIE is already backed up for miles and the beach is ready for its bathers.  However, it is not Jaws patrolling the waters, but his mechanical cousins, RoboTrout.

While we are all familiar with the European debt crisis, what we may not know is where the EU is spending its money.  Well a consortium of EU scientists announced this week announced their development of a new species of marine robotic wildlife.  The Fish Bot is 5 feet long and costs around $31,000 (imagine the caviar).  The purpose of this effort is to seek and destroy “pollutants” from leaking vessels and underwater pipelines.

When asked about the invention, Luke Speller, the EU project lead said, “the capability of cutting the detection and analysis of pollutants in sea water time from weeks to just a few seconds. Chemical sensors fitted to the fish permit real-time in-situ analysis, rather than the current method of sample collection and dispatch to a shore based laboratory.” He further described that the the fish can map “where it is, where it needs to go, what samples it has taken and where from and what the chemical composition of the samples are, as well as communicating all of this back through shallow water to a base station (and) the other (robo) fish.”

While you may infer cynicism for the EU spend, this endeavor does have some merit as Speller exclaims that “in the future, what I’d also like to see is not just a single task robot, but robots that can multi-task – robots that can do search and rescue, monitoring for underwater divers, at the same time as tracking pollution,”  I guess Aquaman should look for a new gig.

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