Indian researchers working on stealth underwater vessel with penguin-inspired fins

IIT-Mandi Stealth Ships
Indian Institute of Technology- Madras claims to have developed bio-inspired propulsion system that will make water and areal vessels faster, more flexible, and undetectable. Researchers suggest development of fin-like blades that are inspired from penguins, turtles and fish. These fins are considered to be super-efficient propellers as well as rudders that rotate and move like penguins.

The other system inspired by fish has two side fins near to the fore end (where the pectoral fins of a fish are) and a tail fin. Both the pectoral and tail fins help propel and manoeuvre but the tailfins give larger thrust,

research scholar M.N. Praven Babu

Most interesting part of this research is that it focused on adopting style of navigation used by aquatic animals that move without creating any ripples on the water surface. That means the underwater vessels could propel without disturbing the water surface, thus, making it difficult to detect.

The researchers also claim that this system would save considerable amount of fuel too. As per testes conducted with some small and large ships so far, the researchers claimed a rise in efficiency from 65 percent to 80 percent.

IIT-Madras Bio-inspired propulsion system

Infographic: Times of India

We tested several parameters including self-propulsion, thrust force, flapping amplitude, flapping frequency, forward speed, lift and drag. Certain devices, we found, had an efficiency of 80 percent when compared to an average of 65 percent,

said Babu.

Further, IIT-M mainly focused on penguin fins because it has two fins that work on the basis of pressure difference between the lower and upper surface of the fins produce propulsion. It can rotate and move forward, said P Krishnakutty from IIT-M’s department of oceanic engineering.

Via: Economic Times

Info Graphic:Times of India

Photo: GaryWallace



Madan has been writing about eco-friendly gadgets and technologies for over 5 years now. He has an inclination for all things green and wonderful. He is a local social activist with a global vision. When not writing, Madan can be seen capturing the best of urban wildlife in his DSLR lens.