New micro-light 'chopper' that hovers like 'jellyfish moves in water'
Scientists in the US have claimed to have built the world's first jellyfish aircraft.
The inventors believe that the tiny, ultra-light lab machine, which weighs just 2.1g, is the first man-made flying object to hover, and move like a jellyfish in water, News24 reported.
Leif Ristroph, who works alongside Stephen Childress at New York University's Applied Math Lab, said that they were interested in making a robotic insect that would be an alternative to the helicopter, for which they became interested in jellyfish.
Engineers have long admired jellyfish for its simple yet efficient motion, sculpted by millions of years of evolution, which requires no brain but just a primitive nervous system.
The aircraft has four petal-shaped wings, each of which is eight centimetres long, and which when folded together form a downward-facing "cone."
A tiny motor, which is attached to a crankshaft, causes the wings to push outwards and then downwards, 20 times a second, forcing out air through the cone's bottom.
(Posted on 16-01-2014)