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Technology

Meet SoFi: The Fish Exposing Oceanic Secrets

Candy Lebby
by Candy Lebby on October 2, 2018

The sea, the ocean, the beach. Frankly, we can’t think of more mysteriously beautiful places on earth than those where large bodies of water ebb and flow and sea life dwell collectively. It’s no wonder then that scientists are eager to uncover some deep sea secrets, by getting up close and personal with marine life.

"The sea, the ocean, the beach. Frankly, we can’t think of more mysteriously beautiful places on earth"

The creation this time: How about a robotic fish which wiggles like a real fish and can swim up to 50 feet deep with a camera attached to it? Yes, the latest innovative technology is nimble, soft and even has a cute name. SoFi, created by MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, might be coming to a sea near you!

The construction industry is no stranger to creative technology. There is some amazing construction management software out there that helps with project efficiency, for example, Buildertrend and Clockshark, to name a few. We also have wearable technology, like the devices launched by Triax, which help with safety and accountability on buildings sites. We also have robotic helping-hand, the Guardian GT, which assists with safety on construction sites, even putting up temporary shelters in an emergency.

SoFi Marine Bobtrade Construction Technology Innovation[Photo Credit: NBC]

When we think of robotic fish, we think of marine construction and the possibilities this technology holds in terms of monitoring the construction taking place underwater.

The positives that working with underwater robots hold, doesn't just stem from the fact that sea life can be explored in their natural habitat. Underwater construction is just like other types of construction except for one thing: You guessed it, it’s done underwater.

"When we think of robotic fish, we think of marine construction and the possibilities this technology holds"

Whether it’s the repair of bridges, building repairs, or wastewater treatment facilities, the underwater construction industry certainly has its own very special arena!

Picture this: Underwater construction sites with their very own robotic SoFi fish, monitoring ongoing building projects, and the environment surrounding them.

Ocean Construction Technology Innovation Bobtrade

[Photo Credit: DVID]

Imagine how much more efficient- and potentially safer underwater buildings sites would be! The possibilities with robotic fish in marine construction are endless, and here at Bobtrade we hope that soon fish like SoFi will be used for underwater construction projects very soon!

"Imagine how much more efficient- and potentially safer underwater buildings sites would be!"

You might be wondering what this clever robot fish is made of. I know we were! Well it’s made of silicone, rubber, and flexible plastic with 3-D printing components, which includes the head (because we all need one) where all the vital electronics and camera are stored.

The guys and gals at MIT mimicked other sea life like jellyfish, tuna and lobsters so they could make the robot as real to life as possible.

The team then made a waterproofed Super Nintendo controller that works to steer the fish to wherever it needs to go on its exploration. So we have a robotic fish with a camera, controlled by a waterproofed retro gamepad. Whatever will be next!

SoFi Underwater Tech Construction Bobtrade Technology Innovation [Photo Credit: TheNextWeb]

In the past, autonomous underwater vehicles were powered by propellers or tethered to boats. With robotic fish SoFi, all the power comes from a lithium polymer battery, similar to the ones found in smartphones. The whole system then uses pulses of ultrasound to communicate.

SoFi may move and behave like a real fish but how did other sea-life react to our robotic tourist? Well during recent test dives around Fiji it was found that reef swim did swim close by without being alarmed, so that means SoFi’s disguise is working. At least for now!

SoFi Underwater Construction Technology Innovation Bobtrade [Photo Credit: Tempo Co]

By far the most exciting thing about this invention lies in its potential. This brilliant robot is shaping up to be a new kind of innovative tool for ocean exploration and of course, marine construction and we’re super excited to see what the future holds.

"By far the most exciting thing about this invention lies in its potential."

It is hoped that future versions of SoFi will improve the fish’s vision and swimming skills which means even better video footage and pictures. There are also plans to create schools of SoFi robots which will help scientists monitor the health of the ocean. Giving the nod to energy efficiency, it is hoped the fish will be recharged by solar-cell platforms floating on the water's surface.

Tags: Technology

AUTHOR
Candy Lebby

Candy Lebby

Content Writer Executive at Bobtrade , relishes in learning about the innovative technology in the construction industry , mama to my beautiful 4 year old, Benjamin, blogger and video games enthusiast.!