It's been a busy week for the robotics community, with robot fish in London and mechanical security guards in Germany for the World Cup.
The first of three robotic fish have been released into the London Aquarium. The fish have six flexible joints and, according to Professor Huosheng Hu of the University of Essex, can swim at up to half a metre per second, although the robots are programmed to swim at half that speed to conserve battery life.
The fish are 50cm long, 15cm high and 12cm wide and have a battery life of about five hours. Professor Hu envisages the robots being used in deep sea exploration or mining activities.
The robots will 'live' alongside their piscine partners in the Aquarium and will be named in a contest for children held later in the year.
Meanwhile at next year's World Cup fans will be guarded by robots for the first time. Each machine is capable of detecting explosives and nuclear, biological and chemical munitions.
Made by German firm Robowatch Technologies the 4ft high robots come equipped with CCTV and thermal imaging cameras and will be checking the outside of venues for possible dangers. This is the first time robots have been directly guarding humans.
The robots can roam the stadium for up to 12 hours between recharges and can move at up to 5km per hour. They cost €80,000 per unit but can be hired for €3,500 a month.
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