Many aquatic animals propel themselves by flapping their tails. Leveraging a recently proposed snapping cantilever beam based on the concept of flexural tensegrity, we propose a bio-inspired propulsion device. The design comprises a segmental beam with hollow voussoirs in unilateral contact along tailor-shaped surfaces, held together by a prestressed internal cable. Prescribing relative periodic rotation to a pair of consecutive control segments of the structured beam produces multi-articulated sequential snapping of all joints. We built a series of prototypes and performed precision experimental tests in water to characterize their propulsive capacity. A parametric study was carried out to characterize the dependence of the thrust produced by the oscillating tail on the following factors: number of segments, shape of the internal cavities dictating the cantilever curvature, and mobility constraint of a fin appended at the end of the tail. The results provide a proof of concept that our design for a snapping structured beam can be used as a propulsive device. We further demonstrate the feasibility of this propulsion unit to propel a toy boat in a water basin. (C) 2022 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.

Flexural-tensegrity snapping tails for bio-inspired propulsion in fluids / Boni, C; Reis, Pm; Royer-Carfagni, G. - In: EXTREME MECHANICS LETTERS. - ISSN 2352-4316. - 56:(2022), p. 101853. [10.1016/j.eml.2022.101853]

Flexural-tensegrity snapping tails for bio-inspired propulsion in fluids

Boni, C
Membro del Collaboration Group
;
Royer-Carfagni, G
Membro del Collaboration Group
2022-01-01

Abstract

Many aquatic animals propel themselves by flapping their tails. Leveraging a recently proposed snapping cantilever beam based on the concept of flexural tensegrity, we propose a bio-inspired propulsion device. The design comprises a segmental beam with hollow voussoirs in unilateral contact along tailor-shaped surfaces, held together by a prestressed internal cable. Prescribing relative periodic rotation to a pair of consecutive control segments of the structured beam produces multi-articulated sequential snapping of all joints. We built a series of prototypes and performed precision experimental tests in water to characterize their propulsive capacity. A parametric study was carried out to characterize the dependence of the thrust produced by the oscillating tail on the following factors: number of segments, shape of the internal cavities dictating the cantilever curvature, and mobility constraint of a fin appended at the end of the tail. The results provide a proof of concept that our design for a snapping structured beam can be used as a propulsive device. We further demonstrate the feasibility of this propulsion unit to propel a toy boat in a water basin. (C) 2022 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.
2022
Flexural-tensegrity snapping tails for bio-inspired propulsion in fluids / Boni, C; Reis, Pm; Royer-Carfagni, G. - In: EXTREME MECHANICS LETTERS. - ISSN 2352-4316. - 56:(2022), p. 101853. [10.1016/j.eml.2022.101853]
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11381/2934315
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