Principle of Operation

Upon optical stimulation, the tissue-engineered ray induces sequential muscle activation via serpentine-patterned muscle tissue, generates undulatory locomotion, and sustains steady forward swimming

Bioinspired & Biomimetic Design

The robotic ray replicates the musculoskeletal structure of animal ray at the meso- and micro- scale

 

Biohybrid Fabrication

Incorporating advances in genetics, tissue-engineering, biomechanics, and microfabrication, we developed a 7-day fabrication process of cyborg systems

Bioinspired Locomotion

A point light stimulus directed at the front of the fins triggers the calcium wave that propagates along the serpentine muscle patterns

 

The ray produced an undulatory wave that traveled along the fin in accordance with the calcium propagation, which led to a rhythmically forward swimming
Body contractions of the tissue-engineered ray generate vortices of alternating sign along the body, which is hallmark of undulatory swimming

Light-Controlled Movement

Speed Control

 

Direction Control

 

We can control speed and direction by modulating light pulse frequency and by synchronously or asynchronously triggering the right and left fin muscles

Light-Guided Navigation

 

The cyborg ray can swim through an obstacle course, guided by light