a tiny jellyfish robot could swim inside the bladder to deliver drugs
Just like a robot can swim in the human body one day and send the medicine to the right place.
Metin Sitti of the Max Planck Institute of Intelligent Systems in Germany and his colleagues designed a robotic jellyfish that can swim, dig holes and transport objects.
It is 3mm in diameter, about the size of a small jellyfish.
It consists of a central body and eight flexible flaps that can run up and down.
They beat about 150 times a minute, also similar to small jellyfish, and are extended by flippers to help the robot advance in the water.
For buoyancy, there is a small bubble in the robot\'s body.
Each of its flaps is made of silicone rubber, which has been embedded with magnetic particles of nd-iron-boron.
By applying a magnetic field in different directions and speeds, the team can guide the robot and change its behavior.
For example, a robot can drill into a pile of beads, or use its flaps to pull small beads of different sizes under the body and carry them with you while swimming.
Setti says a potential application for these small swimmers is to ship drugs to certain parts of the body.
For example, a robot can deliver a tumor to the bladder through a catheter.
Setti says these robots can be made from materials that naturally degrade in the body after a few months and can be discharged from the body.
However, there may be cheaper and easier alternative technologies.
Nature Communications, Issue 10. 1038/s41467-019-10549-