Submerged Biomimetic Electrostatic Imaging in Salt Water [Conference Paper]

NESL Technical Report #: 2010-11-2


Abstract: Navigation, localization, and targeting while completely submerged in the ocean are all extremely difficult due to the lack of a proficient sensor. The highly conductive nature of salt-water results in severe radio-wave attenuation precluding the use of RADAR. Naturally- occurring noise sources, high energy costs, long-wavelengths, and surface turbidity restrict the use of SONAR imaging to low- resolutions, depths, and far-fields. The ocean’s dark, turbulent, and silty disposition impedes optical imaging. In this work, we summarize our latest experimental findings in creating an engineered sensor which mirrors the biological phenomenon of electroreception and demonstrate its ability to “visualize” targets with different con- ductivities from the background ocean environment at very high resolution by detecting perturbations in a quasi-static electric field (electrostatics). Our original work [3] covered the theory and feasibility of biomimetic electroreception, but contained no practical demonstration due to the absence of a fabricated prototype to evaluate. We have recently completed such a device along with the construction of the relevant instrumentation to evaluate it. Accordingly, we believe that this work contains the first report and demonstration of a multichannel electroreceptive sensor array capable of creating Biomimetic Electro- static Images (BEI).

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Publication Forum: The 9th Annual IEEE Conference on Sensors

Page (Count): 4

Date: 2010-11-01

Place: Waikoloa Village, Hawaii, USA

Public Document?: Yes

NESL Document?: Yes

Document category: Conference Paper