Small, Mighty Robots Mimic the Powerful Punch of Mantis Shrimp

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Source: U.S. Army.
Source: U.S. Army.

November 10, 2021 | Originally published by U.S. Army on September 9, 2021

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C. — Modeling the mechanics of the strongest punch in the animal kingdom, researchers with U.S. Army funding built a robot that mimics the movement of the mantis shrimp. These pugnacious crustaceans could pave the way for small but mighty robotic devices for the military.

Researchers at Harvard University and Duke University published their work in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. They shed light on the biology of mantis shrimp, whose club-like appendages accelerate faster than a bullet out of a gun. Just one strike can knock the arm off a crab or break through a snail shell. These crustaceans have even taken on an octopus and won.

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