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Subsea Glider with Fin Ray Effect ®


Fin Ray Effect

Recent studies on the functional morphology of fins of fishes show a surprising biomechanical effect of the fin rays. The bionic implementations of these constructions led to shape-adaptive wing profiles and flow control devices. The functional principle has been patented as "Fin Ray Effect" and a line of products based on this effect is currently being developed.

Besides adaptive seat constructions, novel safe and form-locking grips are of particular interest. Creative applications in household technology, automation technology, keyhole surgery, and bionic robotics are also being developed

Award winning

Smart functional design with life-like swimming capabilities can provide

  • Hydrographic Profiling
  • Sea Floor Cartography
  • Monitoring and Search Missions
  • Technical inspection of subsea installations

The tasks in the ocean - deep sea exploration, offshore industry, ecological research, environmental monitoring and marine security - are become more demanding. New technologies and smarter constructions support this demand by enabling highly capable and cost-efficient underwater surveys, inspection and maintenance tasks.

Efforts are being made to get rid of cables, to "unchain" underwater equipment and to re-place remotely operated vehicles (ROVs) by intelligent autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs). Many of these systems are heavy, big and extremely expensive. Apart from requiring sophisticated support, the operation of these bulky equipment also has a high risk of damage especially when working in the vicinity of fragile deep-water installations. There is an obvious strong need for smaller and smarter platforms.


Technical Specifications
  • Wing span: 1.5 - 3.5 m
  • Max. swimming velocity: 5 - 10 km/h
  • Cruising velocity: 2 - 5 km/h in economic travelling, 0.5 - 1 km/h in gliding
  • Max. depth of operation: 100 m (optionally full ocean depth)
  • Operation time: up to 24 hours
Propulsion Modes

  • Active life-like wing propulsion and level gliding - quiet, fast and efficient with extraordinary maneuverability
  • Semi-passive buoyancy-driven gliding with 3D shape adjustments maintaining the maneuverability - energy efficient vertical scanning and log distance traveling
  • Hydro-jet propulsion - precise control of the flight trajectory maintaining accurate flight levels without body oscillations - suitable for precise sonar measurements, sea-floor mapping and add-on speed requirements