In a bid to tackle the degrading effects of widespread "bottom fouling" in the US fleet, the US Navy has announced that it is engaged in efforts to develop an "autonomous grooming robot". The US Navy's BUG bottom-cleansing bot. Credit: ONR 'Scrub your bottom, sir?' The robot is known as the Bio-inspired Underwater Grooming ( …
only the beginning !
this could go a lot further ... the hull could have a full complement of little BUGs that can crawl all over it, not only anti-fouling but also performing repairs. just like the R2 units on the spaceships in Star Wars eh ?
Could do with being a bit more streamlined though - unlike the R2s, these guys will have to deal with some pretty heavy resistance from the water if they want to work when the ships are underway
Don't ask, don't tell
If I didn't say it, someone else would have.
Chuckling mirthfully. Why can't all news be written this way?
This looks like a robot wars entry. 4 wheel drive pushing type robot with some extra fighting gear located in a hidden compartment.
The article title...
...completely misled me as to its content. *whistles*
No Frikkin laser beams???
Dissapointed with the US Navy now
...do they plan on mechanizing rum and the lash then? Inquiring minds want to know.
Mine's the one with the reinforced patch on the backside.
Also... @Matt 58
I read that as "extra fisting gear..."
Goin' to hell...
Reduces fuel consumption 40%
Some day all ships will have one crawling over their bottom.
That can't be legal
Reducing bottom fouling in the US navy must infringe on the rights of seamen. Abolishing the "Rear Admiral" position would certainly be unpopular aboard ship.
Still, it must be a real problem if it can reduce the speed of a vessel by up to 10%.
(read the article? I choose not to and posted this comment anyway)
for completely misleading me as to what the hell the article was about until half way through.
Well done. 2 gold stars.
At last, something to deal with having a foul bottom.
On second reading
...I caught another one:
"[and reducing] emission of greenhouse gas in the form of carbon dioxide"
Shirley bottom fouling is better known in relation to other and stronger greenhouse gases, both carbon and sulphur compounds...?
Priceless, truly priceless. The well of material for naughty thoughts is bottomless. *chortle*
this lil sucker is magnetic?
Or do they roll the ship over and let it drive around??
"ensuring warfighting dominance for today's Sailors and Marines [and reducing] emission of greenhouse gas in the form of carbon dioxide".
That, and killing whales with a ridiculous sonar thingymajig.
"No Frikkin laser beams???"
No, but they are mutated.
It's a start.
And I prefer flamethrowers anyway.
Hmmm, Yanks late again! :-)
I seem to recall that good old King Henry VIII, had copper sheet nailed below the water line to his wooden warships for that very same reason.
However looking at the price of copper, a multi-million dollar robot is probably cheaper!!
"No Frikkin laser beams???"
Dude, its just a proto type, once they have the thing working they'll just slap on the standard FLB kit.
Funny thing is I designed one of these ten years ago when I was thinking about getting a boat, mine didn't look anything like the picture, it was way cooler, think "lamprey"
Isn't bottom fouling why most people join the navy?
How will the USN keelhaul its misbehaving matelots? The barnacles are the whole point!
They'll be outlawing the cat o' nine tails next.
Nono, the copper bottom was to stop shipworms from making a swiss cheese hull. This is about barnacles and the like, which can attach to copper just fine. It's a real drag.
And small robots don't set off magnetically triggered underwater mines, which copper sheathing does very well...
Actually, copper is now considered so dangerous for the marine environment that it's use in antifouling paints and such has been very constrained over the past few years. Something about killing off all the marine life in the harbours if we continued to use it on every boat...
I had a Viz moment...
Bottom Inspectors, anyone?
"This is about barnacles and the like, which can attach to copper just fine. It's a real drag."
Pun Intended I hope :)
And I am concerned that the wheels might now work too well upside down on the bottom of a ship. . .
Looks like something from the game Bioshock.
(no lewd comment - I feel unworthy to post)
It would appear that way since the article misses the most interereting part, how it stays with the ship. The PDF offers only a hint, but I guess they don't want to give it away to competitors. It's not a magnet anyway.