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Tiny fish-shaped robot that ‘swims’ around picking up microplastics could help clean up the oceans

A fish-shaped robot that ‘swims’ around quickly picking up microplastics has been created by scientists.

The tiny machine ‘wiggles’ its body and ‘flaps’ its tail fins to move through water, and could be used to help clear the oceans of plastic pollution.

It measures just half-an-inch in length, meaning it can reach into tiny cracks and crevices to collect plastic pieces that would otherwise be inaccessible.

Developed by a team at the Sichuan University in China, the robot has no power source, but moves thanks to flashes of near-infrared light.

When the light is shone onto to the ‘fishtail’ it bends away from the surface, and when the light is switched off it flops back, propelling the robot through the water.

It can move at nearly three body lengths per second – a record for soft marine…


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