The study of animals to help us understand design and engineering is getting a swimming chance by fish, robotic fish that is.  But in this case, the robotic version of the real thing may help research understand more about the real thing:


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The weakly electric black ghost knifefish of the Amazon basin has inspired Northwestern University’s Malcolm MacIver and an interdisciplinary team of researchers to develop agile fish robots that could lead to a vast improvement in underwater vehicles used to study fragile coral reefs, repair damaged deep-sea oil rigs or investigate sunken ships.

Read more at: http://phys.org/news/2014-02-robotic-fish-aids-animals.html#jCp


Here is a video of a robotic fish in action: