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A bio-inspired robot able to cling to a shark’s skin could offer a new way to study marine animals. The robot was inspired by the slender sharksucker, a fish that attaches to the shark as it cruises underwater, staying secure even as the shark swims at high speeds. The sucker-equipped robot features a large suction pad lined with rows of hundreds of small, stiff spines. This combination of suction pad and adjustable spines allow the robot to attach securely to a range of underwater surfaces, including shark skin, and remain attached even as the animal performs sharp turns at high speeds.
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