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Sensors 2011, 11(12), 11168-11187; doi:10.3390/s111211168

Design and Implementation of a Biomimetic Turtle Hydrofoil for an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle

1 Department of Computer Science and Industrial Engineering, University of Lleida, Jaume II, 69, Lleida 25001, Spain 2 Autonomous System Lab, Tannenstrasse 3 CLA E 14, 8092 Zürich, Switzerland
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 20 October 2011 / Revised: 16 November 2011 / Accepted: 22 November 2011 / Published: 28 November 2011
(This article belongs to the Section Physical Sensors)
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This paper presents the design and implementation of a turtle hydrofoil for an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle (AUV). The final design of the AUV must have navigation performance like a turtle, which has also been the biomimetic inspiration for the design of the hydrofoil and propulsion system. The hydrofoil design is based on a National Advisory Committee for Aeronautics (NACA) 0014 hydrodynamic profile. During the design stage, four different propulsion systems were compared in terms of propulsion path, compactness, sealing and required power. The final implementation is based on a ball-and-socket mechanism because it is very compact and provides three degrees of freedom (DoF) to the hydrofoil with very few restrictions on the propulsion path. The propulsion obtained with the final implementation of the hydrofoil has been empirically evaluated in a water channel comparing different motion strategies. The results obtained have confirmed that the proposed turtle hydrofoil controlled with a mechanism with three DoF generates can be used in the future implementation of the planned AUV.
Keywords: AUV; DoF; sea turtle locomotion; propulsion system AUV; DoF; sea turtle locomotion; propulsion system
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Font, D.; Tresanchez, M.; Siegentahler, C.; Pallejà, T.; Teixidó, M.; Pradalier, C.; Palacin, J. Design and Implementation of a Biomimetic Turtle Hydrofoil for an Autonomous Underwater Vehicle. Sensors 2011, 11, 11168-11187.

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