Modeling and swimming performance investigation of a biologically inspired caudal fin propulsion system
Chong, Chee Wee
Date of Issue2010
School of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
Robotics Research Centre
Efficient swimming and maneuvering through water have posed a great challenge to current Autonomous Underwater Vehicles (AUV), as the navigating through water is difficult due the properties of the medium and the external disturbances surrounding it. Studies have shown that the AUV, which uses propeller, often results in poor swimming efficiency and large turning radius. Investigation into unsteady fish-like locomotion has shown a highly efficient method of propulsion. Although many fish-like vehicles had been designed and developed around the world, most of them had their focus on designing a life-like fish robot for efficiency and maneuverability rather than exploiting the fish locomotion to address on the critical design and control issues. Limited experiment works had been carried out to demonstrate how this fish-like propulsion method could potentially benefit the relevant fields. A fish-like underwater vehicle (NAF-I) has been developed in this work, in order to carry out in-depth experiments. The aim of this research is to establish a semi-empirical model based on parametric studies, so that a swimming speed prediction equation can be generated for future navigation control.